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Scribe Catalogue, Jul-Dec 2019

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Plots and Prayers

Niki Savva

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The Eighth Life

Nino Haratischvili

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The Wooleen Way

David Pollock

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Guest House for Young Widows

Azadeh Moaveni

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When You’re Not OK

Jill Stark

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Pills, Powder, and Smoke

Antony Loewenstein

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MADE IN SWEDEN

25 ideas that created a country Elisabeth Åsbrink

What are the real Swedish Values? Who is the real Swedish Model?

In recent times, we have come to favour all things Scandi — their food, furnishings, fiction, fashion, and general way of life. We seem to regard the Swedes and their Scandinavian neighbours as altogether more sophisticated, admirable, and evolved than us. We have all aspired to be Swedish, to live in their perfectly designed society from the future. But what if we have invested all our faith in a fantasy? What if Sweden has in fact never been as moderate, egalitarian, dignified, or tolerant as it would like to (have us) think? The recent rise to political prominence of an openly neo-Nazi party has begun to crack the illusion, and here now is Swede Elisabeth Åsbrink, who loves her country ‘but not blindly’, presenting twenty-five of her nation’s key words and icons afresh, in order to give the world a clearer-eyed understanding of this fascinating country …

‘This quirky inventory of Swedish values explores the shades of grey behind the branding of Sweden as the shiny home of ABBA and Volvo ... But it’s not all Bergmanesque gloom. Åsbrink also celebrates Swedes’ sacred relationship with nature, the achievements of its social reformers and the indefatigable biologist Carl Linnaeus.’

Fiona Capp, Sydney Morning Herald

Elisabeth Åsbrink

Elisabeth Åsbrink is a journalist and author. Her parents were Hungarian and English, and she was born and raised in, and now lives in, Sweden. Her previous books have won the August Prize, the Danish-Swedish Cultural Fund Prize, and Poland's Kapuscinski Prize. 1947 (the first of her books to be published in English, by Scribe in 2017) won the prestigious Letterstedt Prize, was translated into 19 languages, and was published in the UK, Australia, the USA, Italy, France, Germany, Spain, Brazil, South Korea, Poland, Denmark, Finland, and Norway, among others. Her latest book is Made in Sweden.

THE MASTER PLAN

my journey from life in prison to a life of purpose Chris Wilson

An inspiring, instructive, and ultimately triumphant guide to turning your life around, from a man who used hard work and his Master Plan to convert a life sentence into a second chance.

Like a lot of people, Chris Wilson didn’t have an easy start in life. But, unlike many, he has managed to overcome severe setbacks to achieve a life defined by material success and personal meaning. How did he do it?

When he committed a fatal crime at the age of 17 and received a devastating prison sentence, incarceration became the unexpected trigger that set Wilson off on a journey of self-improvement — reading, working out, learning languages, and starting a business. Creating a Master Plan for the life he wanted, he worked through it step-by-step to transform his reality.

In this gripping memoir, he tells his story and explains the thought processes and techniques he used to go from being in prison with no hope of parole to being a free man, a successful social entrepreneur, and a respected mentor.

‘Chris Wilson is a remarkable person who, through his struggles and accomplishments, has much to teach us all. The Master Plan is an incredibly moving book that will change the way you look at the criminal justice system.’

Senator Bernie Sanders

Chris Wilson

Chris Wilson lives in Baltimore, Maryland, and is the owner and founder of the Barclay Investment Corporation, a multi-service social enterprise, specialising in residential and commercial contracting work. Barclay works closely with local workforce and social service providers to connect unemployed Baltimore City residents with clients who are in need of services. His other business ventures include the House of DaVinci, a high-end furniture restoration and design company, and Master Plan Productions, a social impact content development company.

LITTLE MOUSE’S HOLIDAY

Riikka Jäntti

Little Mouse and Mummy Mouse are going on holiday to the woods!

The train journey takes a long time, but the boat ride to the cottage is a lot of fun. There are a lot of things to do in the woods – Little Mouse plays cards, has a sauna, and cooks sausages on the fire.

Little Mouse, the curious and lively city toddler, is back in this uniquely Scandinavian countryside adventure.

Praise for Little Mouse's Christmas:‘Beautifully illustrated … put together with enormous charm. I rather want to be invited to Little Mouse’s Christmas.’

Alex O'Connell, The Times

Riikka Jäntti

Riikka Jäntti is a Helsinki-based illustrator and author who has created art for both nonfiction and fairy tale books for children. Beyond Finland her works have been published in Swedish, Danish, Japanese and Chinese. In her illustrations she uses pen and ink as well as watercolour and gouache. In 2009 Jäntti won the first ever Tieto-Lauri, an award for children’s and juvenile non-fiction, for her illustrations in Viidakkotanssi (Jungle Dance).

A WUNCH OF BANKERS

a year in the Hayne royal commission Daniel Ziffer

It was a complicated, galling, and gasp-inducing year at the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry.

It wasn’t just the long list of scandals exposed to a horrified nation — charging fees to dead people, ignoring blatant conflicts of interest, and taking $1 billion from customers in fees that banks were never entitled to.

What made it so fascinating, so heart-breaking, and so enraging was the procession of faces through the witness box, and the team of counsel gazing into the dark heart of banking.

Tearful victims, blank-faced executives, hapless regulators, and a couple of utter charlatans all had their day in court, watched by an audience of millions, and revealing — in their stories — the material to justify re-shaping the multi-trillion dollar financial-services industry that forms a pillar of Australian life.

A Wunch of Bankers covers not just the big shocks, but the small moments — lost in the flurry of daily reporting — that reveal how companies have used the law, limp enforcement, and basic human behaviour to take advantage of customers.

Is there a phrase that allows life-insurance spruikers in call centres to terrify you about your impending death — and the grief-stricken ruins of an estate you’ll leave for your bereaved family — while still being legal? Yes, there is.

Was there a meeting in which a bank’s executives ignored a warning of ‘Extreme’ from its chief risk officer, to embark on a dodgy scheme that accrued $3.6 billion in funds? There was.

In A Wunch of Bankers, the World’s Oldest Debuting TV Reporter brings out the colour and grit of the royal commission’s proceedings, and explores broader issues raised by the testimony. A compelling mixture of analysis, reportage, and observation, it is a revelatory work.

‘Wucking funderful.’

Wil Anderson

Daniel Ziffer

Daniel Ziffer covered the Hayne royal commission for ABC radio, TV, and online. He was formerly the long-time senior producer of ‘Mornings with Jon Faine’, at ABC Radio Melbourne, and has worked on air and in production at Macquarie Radio, as a freelance foreign correspondent based in New York City, a journalist at The Age, and as a magazine editor.

SHOOT THROUGH

J.M. Green

Stella Hardy, the wisecracking social worker, is back to tackle crooked private contractors, an exotic cattle scam, and a delicious Mushroom Jalfrezi.

All Stella Hardy wants is a romantic country getaway with her artist boyfriend, Brophy. Instead, she must head to the Athol Goldwater Agricultural Prison (aka Arsehole Bogwater) to visit her jailbird brother, Ben, and sort out some ‘urgent’ family paperwork. But Stella has barely set foot in the prison when a prisoner, Joe Phelan, is found dead.

Before she knows it, Stella finds herself tasked, against her will, with investigating Joe’s suspicious death away from the eyes of police, including her best friend, Detective Phuong Nguyen. Her old nemesis Minister for Justice Marcus Pugh is pressuring her from above to save his election-year bacon, and Joe’s old friend and former gang member, Percy Brash, is providing a much more chilling form of pressure from below, promising to reduce her to mush and bone fragments if she doesn’t give him the name of Joe’s killer, and soon.

As the clock counts down, Stella becomes embroiled in a story of corruption, conspiracy, and high-tech cattle-wrangling, all while trying to manage her brother’s pregnant girlfriend, Loretta, get to the bottom of Brophy’s increasingly strange behaviour, and evade the murderous intentions of a shadowy mercenary. And then things get really crazy. It’s Stella’s last hurrah, and she’s going out with a bang.

‘A great read ... Wisecracking good fun.’

Karina Barrymore, Herald Sun

J.M. Green

J.M. Green is a crime writer based in Melbourne’s western suburbs. Her debut novel, Good Money, the first hardboiled-crime novel featuring Stella Hardy, was shortlisted for a 2016 Ned Kelly Award, the Sisters in Crime's Davitt Award for best debut, as well as the 2014 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript. She divides her time between writing in her backyard studio and working as a librarian. Shoot Through is the third in the Stella Hardy series, following Too Easy.

PLOTS AND PRAYERS

Malcolm Turnbull’s demise and Scott Morrison’s ascension Niki Savva

In an enthralling sequel to her bestselling The Road to Ruin, Niki Savva reveals the inside story of a bungled coup that overthrew the Liberal prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, and installed a surprise successor, Scott Morrison, who went on to take the party to a miraculous electoral victory.

On 21 August 2018, 35 Liberal MPs cast their vote against Malcolm Turnbull, effectively signalling the end of his leadership. Three days later, the deed was done, and Scott Morrison was anointed prime minister.

Tony Abbott’s relentless campaign of destabilisation, helped along by his acolytes in the parliament and by his powerful media mates, the betrayals of colleagues, and the rise of the religious right — climaxing in Peter Dutton's challenge — all played a part in Turnbull’s downfall.

But so did Turnbull’s own poor political judgement. He was a good prime minister and a terrible politician. The good bits of Malcolm were not enough to make up for the bad Malcolm.

Nevertheless, the sheer brutality of his removal left many Liberals aghast. MPs were traumatised or humiliated by eight days of madness. Men and women cried from sheer anguish. They went through hell, and feared when it was over that they would not make it back — and nor would the Liberal Party. As it turned out, redemption came with Morrison’s unexpected single-handed 2019 election victory.

Turnbull’s road ended in ruins, as it was always bound to and as he always knew it would, as he predicted to Niki Savva less than three years before it happened.

But when his end was imminent, he could not bear to let go. And when it was over, he was defiant, fragile — and, yes — vengeful.

This is the inside story of what happened — and what happened next.

‘The result is a forensically researched and brutally revealing chronicle of the days and weeks before and after the August coup — one told with the precision of an investigative journalist but in the elegant narrative style that always makes Savva a great read.’

Paul Williams, Australian Book Review

Niki Savva

Niki Savva is one of the most senior correspondents in the Canberra Press Gallery. She was twice political correspondent on The Australian, and headed up the Canberra bureaus of both The Herald Sun and The Age. When family tragedy forced a career change, she became Peter Costello’s press secretary for six years and was then on John Howard’s staff for three. Her work has brought her into intimate contact with Australia’s major political players for more than 35 years. She is a regular columnist for The Australian, and often appears on ABC TV’s Insiders.In March 2017, the Melbourne Press Club bestowed Niki with a lifetime achievement award for ‘outstanding coverage of Australian politics as a reporter, columnist and author’. Her previous book, The Road to Ruin, was a major bestseller, and won the 2016 General Nonfiction Book of the Year Award at the Australian Book Industry Awards.

TRAVELS IN ATOMIC SUNSHINE

Australia and the occupation of Japan Robin Gerster

A vivid, salutary study of Australia’s little-known participation in the post-war occupation of Japan.

In February 1946, the Australians of the British Commonwealth Occupation Force (BCOF) moved into western Japan to ‘demilitarise and democratise’ the atom-bombed backwater of Hiroshima Prefecture. For over six years, up to 20,000 Australian servicemen, including their wives and children, participated in an historic experiment in nation-rebuilding dominated by the United States and the occupation’s supreme commander, General MacArthur.

It was to be a watershed in Australian military history and international relations. BCOF was one of the last collective armed gestures of a moribund empire. The Chifley government wanted to make Australia’s independent presence felt in post-war Asia-Pacific affairs, yet the venture heralded the nation’s enmeshment in American geopolitics. This was the forerunner of today’s peacekeeping missions and engagements in contentious US-led military occupations.

Yet the occupation of Japan was also a compelling human experience. It was a cultural reconnaissance — the first time a large number of Australians were able to explore in depth an Asian society and country. It was an unprecedented domestic encounter between peoples with apparently incompatible traditions and temperaments. Many relished exercising power over a despised former enemy, and basked in the ‘atomic sunshine’ of American Japan. But numerous Australians developed an intimacy with the old enemy, which put them at odds with the ‘Jap’ haters back home, and became the trailblazers of a new era of bilateral friendship.

'Drawing extensively on diary entries, papers and personal interviews with Australian soldiers, Gerster paints an intricate portrait of the moral and cultural disorientation felt by the Aussie ‘conquerors’ as they came to terms with not only an enemy decimated by atomic horror but also their own inherent prejudices ... the book is an immense achievement of research and a timely reminder of the tightrope balance of foreign occupation, a message that has particular relevance in today’s post-9/11 climate. It will be particularly popular among avid history readers looking for a new angle on the wartime Australian experience.'

Bookseller & Publisher

Robin Gerster

Robin Gerster is a professor in the School of Languages, Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics at Monash University. He is the author of several books, including the award-winning study Big-noting: the heroic theme in Australian war writing (1987); the travel book Legless in Ginza: orientating Japan (1999); the critical anthologies Hotel Asia (1995) and On the Warpath (2004), and Pacific Exposures: photography and the Australia-Japan relationship (2018), co-authored with Melissa Miles.
His articles have been published extensively in scholarly journals in both Australia and abroad, and he has been a frequent writer of travel pieces for newspapers and magazines.

CHINESE SPIES

from Chairman Mao to Xi Jinping Roger Faligot (trans. Natasha Lehrer)

Are the Chinese secret services now the most powerful in the world? After a long investigation into Beijing’s intelligence services and the backrooms of international politics, journalist Roger Faligot may have found the answer.

Unearthing previously unseen papers and interviewing countless insiders, Roger Faligot’s astonishing account reveals nothing less than a century of world events shaped by Chinese spies. Working as scientists, journalists, diplomats, foreign students, and businessmen, they’ve been everywhere — from Stalin’s purges to 9/11. This murky world has swept up Ho Chi Minh, the Clintons, and everyone in between, with the action moving from Cambodia to Cambridge, and from the Australian outback to the centres of Western power.

This fascinating narrative exposes the sprawling tentacles of the world’s largest intelligence service, from the very birth of communist China to Xi Jinping’s absolute rule today.

Chinese Spies is an astounding and unmatched source book on the extraordinary reach of the PRC’s intelligence network. Roger Faligot explains in colourful detail the complex links between the spy agencies, the Party, the Party leaders, Chinese companies and the People’s Liberation Army. At once fascinating and chilling, it’s a book I found hard to put down.’

Clive Hamilton, author of Silent Invasion

Roger Faligot

Roger Faligot is an investigative journalist and author of many books on European and Asian intelligence, including The Chinese Mafia in Europe and La Piscine, the first history of France's secret services. He has been a correspondent for The European, and Far East correspondent for Intelligence Online (1993–2018).

LUNCH AT 10 POMEGRANATE STREET

a collection of recipes to share Felicita Sala

'A stunningly illustrated recipe book for kids (or anyone, really). It tells the story of different residents of a house cooking foods from around the world. Simply sweet.' - Yotam Ottlenghi

In each apartment, someone is preparing a special dish to share with their neighbours. Mr Singh is making coconut dahl with his daughter while Maria mashes some avocados for her guacamole. Will everything be ready on time?

Written and magnificently illustrated by Felicita Sala, this glorious celebration of community is filled with recipes from all over the world and simple instructions perfect for young chefs.  Lunch at 10 Pomegranate Street is a visual feast to share and delight in. 

'A stunningly illustrated recipe book for kids (or anyone, really). It tells the story of different residents of a house cooking foods from around the world. Simply sweet.'

Yotam Ottlenghi

Felicita Sala

Felicita is a self-taught illustrator and painter. She graduated in Philosophy from the University of Western Australia. She has illustrated many picture books, as well as a huge amount of illustrated food for magazines and newspapers, and has also worked on papercut stop motion animations. As a child she was a super picky eater, but now loves to eat and cook as many different foods from all around the world. Some of her favourite foods include thai green curry, bitter broccoli from Naples and Nutella. She loves to travel and can speak four languages, but wishes she could speak Japanese. Felicita lives in Rome with her husband and their daughter Nina, whose favourite food is Green Rice.

PLASTIC

past, present, and future Eun-ju Kim (trans. Joungmin Lee Comfort) (illus. Ji-won Lee)

The world consumes over 300 million tonnes of plastic each year. But when did we start using plastic? And why?

Where does all the plastic waste go?

Journey through the life cycle of plastic – how plastics are produced, the many uses of plastics throughout the last century, how our plastic use has spiralled out of control, and what we can do about it.

Eun-ju Kim

Eun-ju Kim has been writing children’s books for a long time since studying physics and early childhood education in college.

SHAME ON ME

an anatomy of race and belonging Tessa McWatt

‘What are you?’

Tessa McWatt knows first-hand that the answer to this question, often asked of people of colour by white people, is always more complicated than it seems. Is the answer English, Scottish, British, Caribbean, Portuguese, Indian, Amerindian, French, African, Chinese, Canadian? Like most families, hers is steeped in myth and the anecdotes of grandparents and parents who view their histories through the lens of desire, aspiration, loss, and shame.

In Shame On Me she unspools all the interwoven strands of her inheritance, and knits them back together using additional fibres from literature and history to strengthen the weave of her refabricated tale. She dismantles her own body and examines it piece by piece to build a devastating and incisively subtle analysis of the race debate as it now stands, in this stunningly written exploration of who and what we truly are.

‘Her prose is lyrical and haunting ... McWatt forcefully demonstrates how we all have a stake in dismantling the status quo and creating new paths towards true freedom: “a place outside both the master’s house and the field”. Shame on Me is a tale of our time, yet also timeless.’

Shu-Ling Chua, The Saturday Paper

Tessa McWatt

Tessa McWatt is the author of six novels, two books for young people, and one nonfiction book. Her work has been nominated for the Governor General’s Award, the Toronto Book Awards, and the OCM Bocas Prize. She is a winner of the Eccles British Library Award 2018. McWatt is Professor of Creative Writing at UEA.

THE WAY THROUGH THE WOODS

of mushrooms and mourning Long Litt Woon (trans. Barbara Haveland)

One woman’s journey to overcome grief by delving into an overlooked wonder of nature.

‘As the world of mushrooms opened up to me I began to see that the path back to life was easier than I had thought. It was simply a matter of gathering delights that flash and sparkle. All I had to do was follow the mushroom trail, even though I still didn’t know where it would lead. What would I find in the great unknown that lay ahead of me? What lay beyond those hilltops and mists and turns in the road?’

When Long Litt Woon loses her husband of 32 years to an unexpected death, she is utterly bereft. An immigrant in his country, in losing the love of her life she has also lost her compass and her passport to society. For a time, she is stuck, aimless, disoriented. It is only when she wanders off deep into the woods with mushroom hunters and is taught there how to see clearly what is all around her, and learn how to make distinctions, take educated risks and hear all the different melodies in Nature’s chorus, that she returns to life and to living. And it is mushrooms which guide her back. In this book, she describes how they saved her, and how they might save you.

‘In this enchanting debut memoir, anthropologist Long tells of her life in Norway after the sudden death of her 54-year-old husband left her “alone in the world”. A beginner’s course in mushrooming was an unexpected life raft, leading her to find community and a sense of meaning while wandering the woods ... This unique tale of rebirth after loss doubles as a riveting foray into the world of mushrooming.’

Publishers Weekly

Long Litt Woon

Long Litt Woon (born 1958 in Malaysia) is an anthropologist and Norwegian Mycological Association-certified mushroom professional. She first visited Norway as a young exchange student. There she met and married Norwegian Eiolf Olsen. She currently lives in Oslo, Norway. According to Chinese naming tradition, ‘Long’ is her surname and ‘Litt Woon’ her first name.

FIRST, THEY ERASED OUR NAME

a Rohingya speaks Habiburahman, Sophie Ansel (trans. Andrea Reece)

For the first time, a Rohingya speaks up to expose the persecution facing his people.

‘I am three years old and will have to grow up with the hostility of others. I am already an outlaw in my own country, an outlaw in the world. I am three years old, and don’t yet know that I am stateless.’

Habiburahman was born in 1979 and raised in a small village in western Burma. When he was three years old, the country’s military leader declared that his people, the Rohingya, were not one of the 135 recognised ethnic groups that formed the eight 'national races'. He was left stateless in his own country.

Since 1982, millions of Rohingya have had to flee their homes as a result of extreme prejudice and persecution. In 2016 and 2017, the government intensified the process of ethnic cleansing, and over 600,000 Rohingya people were forced to cross the border into Bangladesh.

Here, for the first time, a Rohingya speaks up to expose the truth behind this global humanitarian crisis. Through the eyes of a child, we learn about the historic persecution of the Rohingya people and witness the violence Habiburahman endured throughout his life until he escaped the country in 2000, eventually reaching Australia by boat in December 2009. He spent nearly three years in detention centres before being released, and now lives in Melbourne..

First, They Erased Our Name is an urgent, moving memoir about what it feels like to be repressed in one’s own country and a refugee in others. It gives voice to the voiceless.

‘This is my chance to speak for my people, who continue to suffer, but who are voiceless.’

The Guardian

Habiburahman

Habiburahman, known as Habib, is a Rohingya. Born in 1979 in Burma (now Myanmar), he escaped torture, persecution, and detention in his country, fleeing first to neighbouring countries in Southeast Asia, where he faced further discrimination and violence, and then, in December 2009, to Australia, by boat. Habib spent 32 months in detention centres before being released. He now lives in Melbourne. Today, he remains stateless, unable to benefit from his full human rights. Habib founded the Australian Burmese Rohingya Organization (ABRO) to advocate for his people back in Myanmar and for his community. He is also a translator and social worker, the casual support service co-ordinator at Refugees, Survivors and Ex-Detainees (RISE), and the secretary of the international Rohingya organisation Arakan Rohingya National Assembly (ARNA), based in the UK. In 2019, he was made a Refugee Ambassador in Australia. The hardship and the human rights violation Habib has faced have made him both a spokesperson for his people and a target for detractors of the Rohingya cause.

Sophie Ansel

Sophie Ansel is a French journalist, author, and director, who lived in South Asia for several years. It was during a five-month stay in Burma that she first encountered the Rohingya people and heard of their plight. She returned to the country several times, and also visited the refugee communities in neighbouring countries like Thailand and Malaysia, where she met Habib in 2006. Habib helped Sophie to better understand the persecution faced by the Rohingya, and she has been advocating for their cause since 2011. When the Myanmar government accelerated the genocide of the Rohingya in June 2012, while Habib was detained in Australia, she helped him to write his story, and the story of his people.

THE WOOLEEN WAY

renewing an Australian resource David Pollock

A remarkable memoir detailing a heroic and unswerving commitment to renew the severely degraded land on Wooleen, a massive pastoral property in Western Australia’s southern rangelands.

The outback conjures many images that the Australian psyche is built upon. Its grand vistas of sweeping dusty plains and its evocation of a tough pioneering spirit form the foundation of our prosperous culture. But these romantic visions often hide the stark environmental, economic, and social problems that have inadvertently been left in the wake of our collective past.

Through retelling the struggle of his family amid droughts, financial ruin, depression, and death, David Pollock exposes the modern-day realities of managing a remote outback station. Forced by a sense of moral responsibility, he set out on an uncharted course to restore the 153,000 hectares of degraded leasehold land that he felt he was obliged to manage on behalf of the Australian people. Then, just at the point when that course seemed certain to fail, the project was saved by the generosity and faith of everyday Australians.

This is an urgent story of political irresponsibility, bureaucratic obstinacy, industrial monopolisation, and, above all, ecological illiteracy in a vast segment of the Australian continent. It is a familiar story of overexploitation. Yet it is also a story of the extraordinary ability of the natural environment to repair itself, given the chance.

After over a decade of his hard-won insights, Pollock outlines in The Wooleen Way a specific and comprehensive plan to reverse the ecological damage done to the pastoral resource since European colonisation. He also emphasises the economic and social necessity of carrying it out, and of curbing the conquering human spirit so that it aligns with the subtle power of the natural landscape.

‘The astonishing story of reviving the oldest land on Earth. The Wooleen Way is a revelation.’

Tim Flannery

David Pollock

David Pollock is a second-generation pastoralist from Wooleen Station in the Murchison region of Western Australia. He took over the 153,000-hectare property when he was 27, and was soon joined by his now wife Frances as they embarked on a quest to transform Wooleen into a sustainable grazing enterprise. They run a station-stay tourism business to help pay for repairing the ecological damage caused by historic overgrazing, and have appeared on the ABC TV’s Australian Story program four times. David loves Frances, palatable perennial grass, Wooleen, their four kelpies, and happy cows. In that order.

THE NEAR AND THE FAR VOLUME 2

more stories from the Asia-Pacific region ed. David Carlin, Francesca Rendle-Short

A dynamic cross-cultural collection of innovative writing from the Asia–Pacific region

In the outer suburbs of Perth, Australia, a seven-year-old discovers ballroom dancing. In Jakarta, Indonesia, a poet tries to move on with his life after splitting up with his boyfriend. In the Philippines’ Quezon City, a nurse reflects on her late mother while caring for a dying woman. And in the Uva province of Sri Lanka, a thirty-panel mural tells the story of a boy who refuses to speak a word.

This vibrant collection features writers who have forged connections across cultures and generations, with contributors from Australia, Papua New Guinea, South Korea, Vietnam, and China, among others. Through sharing perspectives and ideas in the Writers Immersion and Cultural Exchange program, they have created exciting new work that reveals the value of genuine dialogue and mutual respect.

Spanning fiction, nonfiction, and poetry from the Asia-Pacific’s finest writers — including Christos Tsiolkas, Alice Pung, Norman Erikson Pasaribu, Han Yujoo, Ellen van Neerven, and Ali Cobby Eckermann — The Near and The Far, Volume II invites readers on a unique and unforgettable journey.

‘[A] unique collection.’

Happy Mag

David Carlin

David Carlin is an award-winning writer and creative artist. His books include The Abyssinian Contortionist, Our Father Who Wasn’t There, and Performing Digital. David wrote and co-produced the radiophonic feature Making Up, which won four Gold and Silver awards at the 2016 New York Festivals International Radio Awards. David is vice-president of the international NonfictioNOW Conference, and Associate Professor of Creative Writing, co-founder of the non/fictionLab research group, and co-director of the WrICE program at RMIT University.

Francesca Rendle-Short

Francesca Rendle-Short is an award-winning novelist, memoirist, and essayist. She is the author of Imago and the acclaimed novel-cum-memoir Bite Your Tongue. Her work has appeared in a wide range of Australian and international publications, including Best Australian Science Writing, Overland, and The Essay Review, and her artwork is in the collection of the State Library of Queensland. Francesca is Associate Professor of Creative Writing at RMIT University, where she is co-founder and co-director of the non/fictionLab research group and the WrICE program.

PILLS, POWDER, AND SMOKE

inside the bloody war on drugs Antony Loewenstein

Like the never-ending war on terror, the drugs war is a multi-billion-dollar industry that won’t go down without a fight. Pills, Powder, and Smoke explains why.

The war on drugs has been official American policy since the 1970s, with the UK, Europe, and much of the world following suit. It is at best a failed policy, according to bestselling author Antony Loewenstein. Its direct results have included mass incarceration in the US, extreme violence in different parts of the world, the backing of dictatorships, and surging drug addiction globally. And now the Trump administration is unleashing diplomatic and military forces against any softening of the conflict.

Pills, Powder, and Smoke investigates the individuals, officials, activists, victims, DEA agents, and traffickers caught up in this deadly war. Travelling through the UK, the US, Australia, Honduras, the Philippines, and Guinea-Bissau, Loewenstein uncovers the secrets of the drug war, why it’s so hard to end, and who is really profiting from it.

In reporting on the frontlines across the globe — from the streets of London’s King’s Cross to the killing fields of Central America to major cocaine transit routes in West Africa — Loewenstein reveals how the war on drugs has become the most deadly war in modern times. Designed and inspired by Washington, its agenda has nothing to do with ending drug use or addiction, but is all about controlling markets, territories, and people. Instead, Loewenstein argues, the legalisation and regulation of all drugs would be a much more realistic and humane approach. The evidence presented in this book will persuade many readers that he’s right.

‘Loewenstein’s book is meticulous and forensic, and also impassioned and urgent. What stands out is the clarity of his thinking and the rigour of his arguments. He has an historian’s grasp of the big picture and a storyteller's skill for getting us to walk in the other's shoes. The vast scope of his thinking, travel and research is evident on every page, as is his clear-headed compassion. This book is vital and I couldn't put it down.’

Christos Tsiolkas

Antony Loewenstein

Antony Loewenstein is a Jerusalem-based Australian journalist who has written for The New York Times, The Guardian, the BBC, The Washington Post, The Nation, Huffington Post, Haaretz, and many others. He is the author of Disaster Capitalism: making a killing out of catastrophe; the writer/co-producer of the associated documentary, Disaster Capitalism; and the co-director of an Al-Jazeera English film on the opioid drug tramadol. His other books include My Israel Question, The Blogging Revolution, and Profits of Doom, and he is the co-editor of the books Left Turn and After Zionism, and is a contributor to For God’s Sake.antonyloewenstein.com@antloewenstein

KEEP CLEAR

my adventures with Asperger’s Tom Cutler

A wonderfully bittersweet, funnystrange account of living unwittingly with Asperger’s syndrome.

It is only after a crack-up, at the age of 55, that Tom Cutler gets the diagnosis that allows him to make sense of everything that’s come before, including his weird obsessions with road-sign design, magic tricks, spinning tops, and Sherlock Holmes. The final realisation that he has Asperger’s allows a light to dawn on the riddles of his life: his accidental rudeness, maladroitness, Pan Am smile, and other social impediments. But, like many with Asperger’s, Tom possesses great facility with words, and this shines through this exceptionally warm, bright, and moving memoir, which is alternately strikingly revealing, laugh-out-loud funny, and achingly sad.

Tom explores his eccentric behaviour from boyhood to manhood, examines the role of autism in his strange family, and investigates the scientific explanations for the condition. He recounts his anxiety and bewilderment in social situations, his sensory overload, his strange way of dressing, and his particular trouble with girls. He shares his autistic adventures in offices, toyshops, backstage in theatres, and in book and magazine publishing houses, as well as on — or more often off — roads.

‘This is a delightful and intimate insight into Asperger's, it couldn't be more timely or more valuable.’

Nicholas Blincoe, author of Manchester Slingback

Tom Cutler

Tom Cutler is a bestselling author of humour books, including the Amazon number-one blockbuster 211 Things a Bright Boy Can Do. His titles have been translated into several languages. In 2016 he was identified as being on the autism spectrum. This, he says, was the happiest day of his life.

THE OPERATORS

Barry Heard

Sophisticated computer hacking told the syndicate everything about Wally. Everything but why it would be a big mistake to kidnap him.

Retired farmer Wally Flannagan is on a pilgrimage to Indonesia to witness the once-in-a-lifetime blooming of a rare flower. His holiday soon goes awry when he finds himself the target of kidnapping with the goal of extortion. Yet these plans, as alarming as they are for Wally, are little more than a diverting pastime for this criminal syndicate. They are organised, powerful, and ruthless. Yet there’s one thing they don’t know about Wally. He’s a Pig. What’s a Pig? Read on …

The Operators is a thrilling yarn of wit, man bags, and old-fashioned ingenuity in the face of a changing world from master storyteller Barry Heard.

‘This quirky thriller mixes touches of humour with sharp social commentary, interesting dollops of information and a brisk plot that takes the reader down some unexpected paths … An off-beat and surprising thriller that builds to a good climax.’

Jeff Popple, Canberra Weekly Magazine

Barry Heard

Barry Heard was conscripted in Australia’s first national-service ballot, and served in Vietnam as an infantryman and radio operator. After completing his national service, he returned home, where he found himself unable to settle down. He had ten different jobs in his first ten years back, worked as a teacher for a further ten years, and then held several mid-managerial posts before succumbing to a devastating breakdown due to severe post-traumatic stress disorder.Since recovering, Barry has decided to concentrate on his writing. His short stories have received several prizes, including the Sir Edmund Herring Memorial Award and the Sir Weary Dunlop Prize. Barry’s books include the bestselling memoir Well Done, Those Men, its prequel, The View from Connor’s Hill, and the World War I novel Tag. He lives with his family in rural Victoria.

WHEN YOU’RE NOT OK

a toolkit for tough times Jill Stark

From Jill Stark, bestselling author of Happy Never After, comes this warm and practical book of tips and wisdom to help guide you through the tough times.

This is a self-care manual for the days when you feel alone — the days when you worry that you’re too weird or broken or unfixable to be normal. With compassion, humour, and honesty, Jill offers signposts to help you find the path back to yourself.

Whether you’re having a bad day, or a run of bad days that seems never-ending, When You’re Not OK is an emotional first-aid kit for your body, mind, and soul, written by someone who’s been there too.

Praise for Happy Never After:‘Extraordinary … Stark address[es] this vexed question of what effect our over-stimulated, almost constantly wired brains are having on our sense of wellbeing.’

Johann Hari, author of Lost Connections

Jill Stark

Jill Stark is an award-winning journalist and author with a career spanning two decades in both the UK and Australian media. She spent ten years on staff at The Age covering health and social affairs as a senior writer and columnist, and now works as a freelance journalist, media consultant, and speech writer. Her first book, High Sobriety, was longlisted for the Walkley Book Award and shortlisted in the Kibble Literary Awards.

THE EIGHTH LIFE

(for Brilka) The International Bestseller Nino Haratischvili (trans. Charlotte Collins, Ruth Martin)

‘That night Stasia took an oath, swearing to learn the recipe by heart and destroy the paper. And when she was lying in her bed again, recalling the taste with all her senses, she was sure that this secret recipe could heal wounds, avert catastrophes, and bring people happiness. But she was wrong.’

At the start of the twentieth century, on the edge of the Russian Empire, a family prospers. It owes its success to a delicious chocolate recipe, passed down the generations with great solemnity and caution. A caution which is justified: this is a recipe for ecstasy that carries a very bitter aftertaste …

Stasia learns it from her Georgian father and takes it north, following her new husband, Simon, to his posting at the centre of the Russian Revolution in St Petersburg. Stasia’s is only the first in a symphony of grand but all too often doomed romances that swirl from sweet to sour in this epic tale of the red century.

Tumbling down the years, and across vast expanses of longing and loss, generation after generation of this compelling family hears echoes and sees reflections. Great characters and greater relationships come and go and come again; the world shakes, and shakes some more, and the reader rejoices to have found at last one of those glorious old books in which you can live and learn, be lost and found, and make indelible new friends.

‘It is a great read. If you love historical sagas and romances, this is the book for you.’

ABC Radio National The Bookshelf

Nino Haratischvili

Nino Haratischvili was born in Georgia in 1983, and is an award-winning novelist, playwright, and theatre director. At home in two different worlds, each with their own language, she has been writing in both German and Georgian since the age of twelve. In 2010, her debut novel Juja was nominated for the German Book Prize, as was her most recent Die Katze und der General in 2018. In its German edition, The Eighth Life was a bestseller, and won the Anna Seghers Prize, the Lessing Prize Stipend, and the Bertolt Brecht Prize 2018. It is being translated into many languages, and has already been a major bestseller on publication in Holland, Poland, and Georgia.

THE WOMAN WHO CRACKED THE ANXIETY CODE

the extraordinary life of Dr Claire Weekes Judith Hoare

The true story of the little-known mental-health pioneer who revolutionised how we see the defining problem of our era: anxiety.

Panic, depression, sorrow, guilt, disgrace, obsession, sleeplessness, low confidence, loneliness, agoraphobia … Dr Claire Weekes knew how to treat them, but was dismissed as underqualified and overly populist by the psychiatric establishment. In a radical move, she had gone directly to the people. Her international bestseller Self Help for Your Nerves, first published in 1962 and still in print, helped tens of millions of people to overcome all of these, and continues to do so.

Weekes pioneered an anxiety treatment that is now at the cutting edge of modern psychotherapies. Her early explanation of fear, and its effect on the nervous system, is state of the art. Psychologists use her method, neuroscientists study the interaction between different fear circuits in the brain, and many psychiatrists are revisiting the mind–body connection that was the hallmark of her unique work. Face, accept, float, let time pass: hers was the invisible hand that rewrote the therapeutic manual.

This understanding of the biology of fear could not be more contemporary — ‘acceptance’ is the treatment du jour, and all mental-health professionals explain the phenomenon of fear in the same way she did so many years ago. However, most of them are unaware of the debt they have to a woman whose work has found such a huge public audience. This book is the first to tell that story, and to tell Weekes’ own remarkable tale, of how a mistaken diagnosis of tuberculosis led to heart palpitations, beginning her fascinating journey to a practical treatment for anxiety that put power back in the hands of the individual.

‘It’s truly astonishing that Dr Claire Weekes is not a household name … this book shines a light on her considerable achievements with great respect and meticulous detail.’

Leigh Sales

Judith Hoare

Judith Hoare is a journalist who worked for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and The Australian Financial Review over several decades. She started her career on Chequerboard, a trailblazing social-issues television program in the 1970s, and then moved to the AFR, reporting on federal politics in Canberra. She shifted to features writing, to eventually specialise in editing long-form journalism for the newspaper, and was appointed deputy editor in 1995, a position she held for 20 years.

FENTANYL, INC.

how rogue chemists are creating the deadliest wave of the opioid epidemic Ben Westhoff

A TELEGRAPH BOOK OF THE YEAR

An undercover investigation into the synthetic-drug epidemic.

A new group of chemicals is radically transforming the recreational-drug landscape. Known as Novel Psychoactive Substances (NPS), they range from so-called ‘legal highs’ like Spice, to synthetic opioids — most famously, the deadly fentanyl.

Designed to replicate the effects of established drugs like cocaine, ecstasy, marijuana, and heroin, NPS are synthesised in laboratories. They are cheap to produce and easy to transport. They are also extremely potent and often deadly. Originally developed for medicinal purposes, and then hijacked by rogue chemists, who change their molecular structures to stay ahead of the law, these chemicals’ effects can be impossible to predict. What we do know is that they have triggered the biggest drug epidemic that America has ever seen, and which is now spreading internationally.

In Fentanyl, Inc., award-winning investigative journalist Ben Westhoff goes undercover to infiltrate the shadowy world of synthetic drugs — becoming, in the process, the first journalist to infiltrate a Chinese fentanyl lab. He tracks down the drug baron in New Zealand who unintentionally helped to start the synthetic-drug revolution; prowls St. Louis streets with a former fentanyl dealer to understand how the epidemic started; and chronicles the lives of addicts and dealers, families of victims, law enforcement officers, and underground drug-awareness organisers in the US and Europe. Fentanyl, Inc. is essential reading on a global calamity we are only just beginning to understand.

‘This is an exceptionally useful and well-timed book. I hope anyone concerned about this era’s new addiction epidemic will read it and put its messages to use. Ben Westhoff very skilfully combines pharmacology, politics, law enforcement, and gripping international intrigue in his account of America’s number-one public health problem. I hope Fentanyl, Inc. is widely read and influential.’

James Fallows, award-winning journalist and author of China Airborne

Ben Westhoff

Ben Westhoff is an award-winning investigative reporter who has covered stories ranging from gangland Los Angeles to Native American blood feuds to government corruption. He has written at length about music and culture, his entry point to the world of synthetic drugs, in Rolling Stone, The Guardian, Village Voice, Vice, Oxford American, the Wall Street Journal, and elsewhere. He is the author of two previous books: Original Gangstas: The Untold Story of Dr. Dre, Eazy-E, Ice Cube, Tupac Shakur, and the Birth of West Coast Rap (Hachette, 2016), and Dirty South: Outkast, Lil Wayne, Soulja Boy, and the Southern Rappers Who Reinvented Hip-Hop (Chicago Review Press, 2011).

FLY ALREADY

stories Etgar Keret

Winner of the Sapir Prize 2019.

A man is bribed to step into a courtroom to call an unknown defendant a murderer. A rich, lonely man hits on the idea of buying up people’s birthdays so he’ll always have friends calling. A writer agrees to write a story starring his friend so said friend can get a girl into bed. A father and son spot a stranger standing on the edge of a building, and the son shouts encouragement: fly already!

In these 22 short stories, wild capers reveal painful emotional truths, and the bizarre is just another name for the familiar. Wickedly funny and thrillingly smart, Fly Already is a collage of absurdity, despair, and love, from a master of the genre.

‘Brilliantly edgy, unsettling, Kafkaesque and often very funny.’

Joyce Carol Oates

Etgar Keret

Etgar Keret was born in Ramat Gan and now lives in Tel Aviv. A winner of the French Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres, The Camera D’Or, and the Charles Bronfman Prize, he is the author, most recently, of the memoir The Seven Good Years, and story collections like The Bus Driver Who Wanted To Be God. His work has been translated into forty-two languages and has appeared in The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, Wired, The Paris Review, and The New York Times, among many other publications, and on This American Life, where he is a regular contributor.

POLITICS NOW

David Rowe

A riveting collection from Australia’s finest and most instantly recognisable political cartoonist.

This first and long-awaited collection throws us into the grotesque, malformed, and subterranean world that is Rowe’s vision of politics now. Enter at your own risk.

Featuring all the madness and downright stupidity of the past five years, Rowe’s freakish burlesque includes the usual suspects: Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull, Scott Morrison, and Bill Shorten, as well as a host of minor monstrosities who you would rather forget lest they haunt your dreams.

Rowe is one of the few Australian cartoonists who pay close attention to international affairs. There are cartoons on China, Europe, the UK, and the slow-motion train wreck of Brexit, wars in the Middle East, terror, and the rise of authoritarians.

And, of course, Donald Trump. No cartoonist in the world, and that includes those from the US, has laid bare the Donald and his debauched administration with such devastating insight and wit.

If the road to excess leads to the palace of wisdom, then David Rowe is indeed a wise man, for beneath the outrageous gothic menagerie of Rowe’s imagination is a fierce intelligence and ethical sense combined with superb artistry.

This essential collection — edited by Russ Radcliffe, compiler of the bestselling Best Australian Political Cartoons, and introduced by Laura Tingle, one of Australia’s most respected journalists — features David Rowe’s finest political cartoons, caricatures, and sketches from the past five years.

Politics Now brings together 204 cartoons drawn over the past five years. They are arranged thematically and cover the time in office of three prime ministers as well as institutions such as banks and international politics.’

Theo Chapman, Australian Financial Review

David Rowe

David Rowe was born in the Netherlands in 1968, and arrived in Canberra at the age of four. He started drawing when attending St Edmund's College, and after dropping out of every tertiary institution available, found work on the Canberra Times. After a brief stint in London, he moved to Sydney to work at Fairfax. For over twenty years his cartoons and caricatures have appeared in the Australian Financial Review and other Fairfax publications.Rowe is the recipient of numerous cartooning awards, including multiple Walkleys, Gold Stanley Awards, and Behind the Lines Cartoonist of the Year, as well as many prestigious international awards. He is consistently the most popular cartoonist in the bible of Australian political cartooning, Russ Radcliffe’s Best Australian Political Cartoons.

GUEST HOUSE FOR YOUNG WIDOWS

among the women of ISIS Azadeh Moaveni

In early 2014, the Islamic State clinched its control of Raqqa in Syria, whereupon ISIS’s leader, Baghdadi, urged Muslims around the world to join the caliphate. Having witnessed the brutal oppression of the Assad regime in Syria, and being moved to fight for justice, thousands of men and women heeded his call.

At the heart of this book is a cast of unforgettable young women who responded. All from urban families, some were still in school; some with university degrees and bookshelves filled with novels by Jane Austen and Dan Brown; and many with cosmopolitan dreams of travel and adventure. But instead of finding a land of justice and piety, they found themselves trapped within the most brutal terrorist regime of the twenty-first century — a world of chaos and upheaval and violence.

What is the line between victim and collaborator? How do we judge these women who both suffered and inflicted intense pain? What role is there for Muslim women in the West? In what is bound to be a modern classic of narrative nonfiction, Moaveni takes us into the school hallways of London, kitchen tables in Germany, coffee shops in Tunis, and the caliphate’s OB/GYN and its ‘Guest House for Young Widows’ — where wives of the fallen waited to be remarried — to demonstrate that the problem called terrorism is a far more complex, political, and deeply relatable one than we generally admit.

‘In this searing investigation, Moaveni explores the phenomenon of Muslim women — many of them educated, successful, and outwardly Westernised — choosing to travel to Syria in support of jihad ... In concise, visceral vignettes, Moaveni immerses her readers in a milieu saturated with the romantic appeal of violence. The result is a journalistic tour de force that lays bare the inner lives, motivations, and aspirations of her subjects.’ STARRED REVIEW

Publishers Weekly

Azadeh Moaveni

Azadeh Moaveni is a journalist, writer, and academic who has been covering the Middle East for nearly two decades. She started reporting in Cairo in 1999 while on a Fulbright fellowship to the American University in Cairo. For the next several years she reported from throughout the region as Middle East correspondent for Time magazine, based in Tehran, and also covering Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, and Iraq. She is the author of Lipstick Jihad and Honeymoon in Tehran, and the co-author, with Nobel Peace Laureate Shirin Ebadi, of Iran Awakening. In November 2015 she published a front-page article in The New York Times on ISIS women defectors that was a Pulitzer Prize finalist as part of the Times’s ISIS coverage. Her writing appears in The Guardian, The New York Times, and The London Review of Books. She teaches journalism at NYU in London, is a former New America Fellow, and is now senior gender analyst at the International Crisis Group.www.AzadehMoaveni.com

KOPP SISTERS ON THE MARCH

Amy Stewart

The fearless Kopp sisters are back in another unforgettable romp by HWA-longlisted international bestseller Amy Stewart.

It’s 1917, and the US Army is marching to join its allies in the First World War. Constance Kopp and her sisters may not be soldiers, but that doesn’t mean they can’t do their bit. All over America, women are banding together to create military-style training camps, and so the Kopp sisters leave their farm in New Jersey to learn some army discipline.

In Kopp Sisters on the March, the women of Camp Chevy Chase face down the scepticism of the War Department, the double standards of a scornful public, and the very real perils of war. Once again, Amy Stewart has brilliantly brought a little-known moment in history to light.

‘Told in Stewart’s nimble, witty prose, this fifth in the popular series is based largely on fact and offers a paean to patriotism and the role women have played in war, even a century ago. Devoted fans will be pleased with the tantalising hint Stewart provides about what lies ahead for Constance.’ STARRED REVIEW

Booklist

Amy Stewart

Amy Stewart is the New York Times bestselling author of nine books, including Girl Waits with Gun and the rest of the Kopp Sisters series, which are based on the true story of one of America’s first female deputy sheriffs and her two rambunctious sisters. Her popular non-fiction titles include The Drunken Botanist, Wicked Plants, and Flower Confidential.She lives in Portland with her husband Scott Brown, a rare book dealer. They own an independent bookstore called Eureka Books, which is so independent that it lives in California while they live in Oregon.

DESTINED FOR WAR

can America and China escape Thucydides’ Trap? Graham Allison

China and the United States are heading toward a war neither wants.

The reason is Thucydides’ Trap, a deadly pattern of structural stress that results when a rising power challenges a ruling one. This phenomenon is as old as history itself. About the Peloponnesian War that devastated ancient Greece, the historian Thucydides explained: ‘It was the rise of Athens and the fear that this instilled in Sparta that made war inevitable.’ Over the past 500 years, these conditions have occurred sixteen times. War broke out in twelve of them.

Today, as an unstoppable China approaches an immovable America, and both Xi Jinping and Donald Trump promise to make their countries ‘great again’, the seventeenth case looks grim. Unless China is willing to scale back its ambitions or Washington can accept becoming number two in the Pacific, a trade conflict, cyberattack, or accident at sea could soon escalate into all-out war.

In Destined for War, the eminent Harvard scholar Graham Allison explains why Thucydides’ Trap is the best lens for understanding U.S.-China relations in the twenty-first century. Through uncanny historical parallels and war scenarios, he shows how close we are to the unthinkable. Yet, stressing that war is not inevitable, Allison also reveals how clashing powers have kept the peace in the past — and what painful steps the United States and China must take to avoid disaster today.

‘Graham Allison has been a source of inspiration for me as a student and diplomat. As with Essence of Decision, Destined for War again provides us with his penetrating insights into global politics in the 21st century and beyond.’

Ban Ki-Moon, former Secretary General of the United Nations

Graham Allison

Graham Allison is director of Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and the bestselling author of Lee Kuan Yew, Nuclear Terrorism, and Essence of Decision. Founding dean of the Kennedy School of Government, he has advised the secretaries of defense under Reagan, Clinton, and Obama.

BEST AUSTRALIAN POLITICAL CARTOONS 2019

ed. Russ Radcliffe

The year in politics as observed by Australia's funniest and most perceptive political cartoonists.

Celebrate another glorious year of achievement in Australian politics with our humble, balanced, and always scrupulously fair cartoonists as they pay tribute to the selfless service of our leaders.

With Dean Alston, Peter Broelman, Pat Campbell, Andrew Dyson, John Farmer, First Dog on the Moon, Matt Golding, Fiona Katauskas, Mark Knight, Jon Kudelka, Alan Moir, David Pope, David Rowe, Andrew Weldon, Cathy Wilcox, and many more …

‘An astute, amusing summary of the year’s unlikely events.’

Steven Carroll, Sydney Morning Herald

Russ Radcliffe

Russ Radcliffe created the annual Best Australian Political Cartoons series in 2003. His other books include: Man of Steel: a cartoon history of the Howard years in 2007; Dirt Files: a decade of Australian political cartoons in 2013; and My Brilliant Career: Malcolm Turnbull, a political life in cartoons in 2016.Russ has edited collections from some of Australia’s finest political cartoonists, including Matt Golding, Judy Horacek, Bill Leak, Alan Moir, Bruce Petty, John Spooner and David Rowe, and curated several exhibitions including Moments of Truth, Dirt Files and Suppositories of Wisdom.In 2013 Russ was awarded the Australian Cartoonists Association’s Jim Russell Award for his contribution to Australian cartooning.

RHYME CORDIAL

Antonia Pesenti

From ALARM CROC to CHEEPY HEAD, you’ll enjoy RHYME CORDIAL all day long!

The award-winning book of wordplay from bestselling illustrator Antonia Pesenti. Open the pages to reveal unexpected rhymes and bold, bright illustrations.

‘There’s something quite architectural about this wonderful book of word play with its simple lines and solid blocks of colour … Bright simple colours, black and white stripes and white stars on black backgrounds repeat throughout the book in cohesive visual echoes as pleasing as the word play.’

Adelaide Advertiser

Antonia Pesenti

Antonia Pesenti is a Sydney based architect and illustrator. After graduating from Architecture at Sydney University, Antonia relocated to Paris, working as an architect for 8 years. Parallel to her work there, Antonia spent her time discovering and documenting Paris through drawing, developing a passion for illustrated books. Today she combines co-directing the award-winning design partnership MAKE Creative with illustrating/designing and making beautiful books, exploring all formats from experimental zines through to picture books.

1956

the year Australia welcomed the world Nick Richardson

An engrossing account of a pivotal year in Australia’s history.

This book debunks one of the hardiest clichés in Australian history: that the 1950s was a dull decade, when the nation seemed only interested in a quiet life, a cup of tea, and a weekend drive. The truth is that, by the time the ’60s came around, Australia was already expanding its outlook — politically, economically, and culturally — and central to this were the events of 1956.

This was the year when Melbourne hosted the Summer Olympics, the first edition of the Games to be held outside Europe and North America. It also heralded the arrival of television in Australia. In this year, Prime Minister Robert Menzies grappled with world politics, when he opened the country’s doors to refugees from the Hungarian uprising, allowed British nuclear tests at Maralinga, and tried to resolve the greatest diplomatic episode of the decade: the Suez Crisis. In these ways and more, the world came to Australia’s doorstep in 1956, challenging rusted-on habits and indelibly shifting the nation’s perception of itself.

Nick Richardson peels back the layers to reveal Australia at a critical moment in time. He brilliantly recreates the broader events surrounding the Melbourne Olympics at the end of 1956, as well as the dramas of the Games themselves. Throughout, he also follows a range of men and women who were touched by this transformation, to illuminate the personal consequences of being part of Australia’s pivotal year.

‘Nick Richardson captures the feel not only of a unique Olympics, but of a unique time in Australian history. He uses the Olympics as the lens through which to view some of the most profound developments in Australia and the world … This book pulls back the blinds on what was a vitally important year in Australian — and world — history … Nick has the rare ability to blend an historian’s eye for the critical detail with a journalist’s nose for the underlying human story to deliver a compelling read … simply an excellent storyteller.’

Michael Gleeson, The Age

Nick Richardson

Nick Richardson is an author, academic, and journalist who has written for a range of publications in England and Australia. He has a PhD in history from the University of Melbourne and is Adjunct Professor of Journalism at La Trobe University. He lives in Melbourne.

IN LOVE WITH GEORGE ELIOT

Kathy O’Shaughnessy

A TLS BOOK OF THE YEAR

Who was the real George Eliot? In Love with George Eliot is a glorious debut novel which tells the compelling story of England’s greatest woman novelist as you’ve never read it before.

Marian Evans is a scandalous figure, living in sin with a married man, George Henry Lewes. She has shocked polite society, and women rarely deign to visit her. In secret, though, she has begun writing fiction under the pseudonym George Eliot. As Adam Bede’s fame grows, curiosity rises as to the identity of its mysterious writer. Gradually it becomes apparent that the moral genius Eliot is none other than the disgraced woman living with Lewes.

Now Evans’ tremendous celebrity begins. The world falls in love with her. She is the wise and great writer, sent to guide people through the increasingly secular, rudderless century, and an icon to her progressive feminist peers — with whom she is often in disagreement. Public opinion shifts. Her scandalous cohabitation is forgiven. But this idyll is not secure and cannot last. When Lewes dies, Evans finds herself in danger of shocking the world all over again.

Meanwhile, in another rudderless century, two women compete to arrive at an interpretation of Eliot as writer and as woman …

Everyone who has thrilled at being shown the world anew by George Eliot will thrill again at her presence, complex and compelling, here.

‘I devoured this, and it made me happy and excited. It reminded me of Toibin's The Master: its representations of the psychology of the characters, their shifting ground, variegated moods, seemed to work in something like the same way, and with the same fineness. It's really beautifully tender, subtle, imaginative, saturated authentically (to my mind anyway) in another time and thought-world.’

Tessa Hadley, author of Late in the Day

Kathy O’Shaughnessy

Kathy O’Shaughnessy has reviewed books for The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Times, Financial Times, Independent, The Observer, TLS, New Statesman, The Spectator, and others. She has worked as Deputy Editor on the Literary Review, Arts & Books Editor of Vogue, Literary Editor of The European, and Deputy Editor of The Telegraph Arts & Books. Her stories have been published in Faber’s First Fictions, and she edited and introduced Drago Stambuk’s poems, Incompatible Animals.

WATERS OF THE WORLD

the story of the scientists who unravelled the mysteries of our seas, glaciers, and atmosphere — and made the planet whole Sarah Dry

How did we come to have a global climate? What role do the complex interactions of ice, ocean and atmosphere play in sustaining life on Planet Earth? And who are the scientists who figured all these intricate processes out?

Waters of the World is a tour through 150 years of the history of a significant but underappreciated idea: that the Earth has a global climate system made up of interconnected parts, constantly changing on all scales of both time and space. A prerequisite for the discovery of global warming and climate change, this idea was forged by scientists studying water in its myriad forms. This is their story.

Linking the history of the planet with the lives of those who studied it, Sarah Dry follows the remarkable scientists who ascended volcanic peaks to peer through an atmosphere’s worth of water vapour, cored mile-thick ice sheets to uncover the Earth’s ancient climate history, and flew inside storm clouds to understand how small changes in energy can produce both massive storms and the general circulation of the Earth’s atmosphere. Each toiled on his or her own corner of the planetary puzzle. Gradually, their cumulative discoveries coalesced into a unified working theory of our planet’s climate.

We now call this field climate science, and in recent years it has provoked great passions, anxieties, and warnings. But no less than the object of its study, the science of water and climate is — and always has been — evolving. By revealing the complexity of this history, Waters of the World delivers a better understanding of our planet’s climate at a time when we need it the most.

Waters of the World sparkles with lyricism and wit. Dry is a gifted storyteller, and her research into the pre-history of Earth system science has turned up gripping tales of risk, adventure, defiance, and discovery. A unique and important book.’

Deborah R. Coen, author of Climate in Motion: Science, Empire, and the Problem of Scale

Sarah Dry

Sarah Dry has been studying the history of meteorology and climate for more than 10 years. Her previous books include a biography of Marie Curie (2004) and The Newton Papers (2013). Born and raised in Philadelphia, she worked in environmental journalism, academic publishing, and biotechnology before moving to London in 2001 to study the history of science. She lives in Oxford with her family, and is on the board of the Science Museum.

FASCISTS AMONG US

online hate and the Christchurch massacre Jeff Sparrow

The first book since Christchurch to trace the massacre’s fascist roots and what it represents.

The massacre of more than fifty worshippers at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, shocked the world. The murders were not random. They expressed a particular ideology, one that the alleged perpetrator described as ‘fascism’.

But what does fascism mean today — and what kind of threat does it pose? Jeff Sparrow traces the history of the far right, showing how fascists have adapted to the new politics of the twenty-first century. He argues that the mosque killer represents a frightening new phenomenon — decentralised right-wing terrorism that recruits by committing atrocities, feeding on itself and spreading from country to country.

Burgeoning in dark places online, contemporary fascism exults in violence and picks its targets strategically. Today, it is Muslims; tomorrow, it will be Jews or gays or Asians. Even the widespread despair generated by climate change is being harvested to weaponise young men with the politics of hate.

With imitative massacres already occurring around the world, Christchurch must be a wake-up call. This book makes a compelling, urgent case for a new response to an old menace.

‘This short but incisive book builds to a stirring and well-argued conclusion ... What Sparrow does so eloquently ... is overtly link fascism, historically and theoretically, with political violence.’ FOUR STARS

Kelsey Oldham, Books + Publishing

Jeff Sparrow

Jeff Sparrow is a writer, editor, and broadcaster. He writes a regular column for The Guardian and contributes regularly to many other Australian and international publications. Jeff is a former member of the 3RRR Breakfasters team and the immediate past editor of literary journal Overland. He is the author of a number of books, including Money Shot: a journey into porn and censorship; No Way But This: in search of Paul Robeson; and Trigger Warnings: political correctness and the rise of the right.

MAURICE BLACKBURN

champion of the people David Day

[Maurice Blackburn] brought into public life a rare character, complete indifference to personal consequences, an uncommon scholarship, great zeal for humanity, and a firm belief, which I am happy to share, that men are immeasurably more important than laws.—Robert Menzies

[Maurice Blackburn] served the people who suffered injustice … He pleaded their cause, and he engaged in the study of how best he could serve them … He would allow nothing to turn him from what he considered to be the right, and however unpopular he might become, however discomforting his attitude might be to his colleagues, the divine monitor within him impelled him to stand for what in his soul he believed.—John Curtin

After his father died when Maurice Blackburn was a child, he was brought up by a mother who was descended from Melbourne’s gentry and was determined to raise him as a gentleman who would achieve greatness as a judge or a prime minister. However, Blackburn had humbler aims. With the support of his wife, he wanted instead ‘to make life better for the ordinary men and women of the country’. He went on to do so, defending the rights of working people as a leading barrister in the courts and as a politician in the parliaments of Melbourne and Canberra, and became much loved and admired across the political spectrum.

A socialist and internationalist all his life, who was twice expelled from the Labor Party for his principles, Blackburn became a leading opponent of conscription in both world wars, a supporter of rights for women, an advocate for peace, and a tireless campaigner for transforming Australia so that it served the interests of all its people.

Part love story, part gripping political thriller, the poignant story of the much-lauded Maurice Blackburn exposes a time when influence-peddling was rife, when political possibilities seemed limitless, and when a man of principle could still make a big difference to the course of Australian politics.

‘This book goes behind the legal legend to explore what made this unusual man tick in an age of political disillusionment; it has lessons for our time.’

The Hon. Michael Kirby, AC, CMG, former Justice of the High Court of Australia

David Day

David Day is a bestselling and prize-winning biographer and historian, several of whose books have been published to acclaim in the United States and Britain and have been translated into numerous languages. Among his many academic posts, David Day has been a junior research fellow at Clare College in Cambridge, a by-fellow at Churchill College in Cambridge, and a visiting fellow at the University of Aberdeen and the Australian National University. He spent three years as a visiting professor at University College, Dublin, and two years at the University of Tokyo. He is currently an honorary associate in the history program at La Trobe University. Maurice Blackburn: champion of the people is his twentieth book.

HEALTHY AS F*CK

the 7 essential habits you need to get lean, stay healthy, and generally kick arse at life Oonagh Duncan

THE #1 INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER.

Join the Movement. Ditch the Diet.

Who’s ready to stop thinking about weight loss? To free their brain from thoughts about ketones, calories, and fasting? Who wants life to be more effortless, energetic, and empowered?

Welcome to a refreshing and gloriously unapologetic conversation about health, fitness, and habits. Award-winning trainer Oonagh Duncan cuts through the wellness clutter to drop some truth bombs: it might not be six-pack abs you’re looking for — it might be happiness, confidence, and acceptance. But if losing your belly is what you want, don’t let anyone — including yourself — stop you from going after it. And she’ll show you how to make it happen.

There’s only one major difference between those rare unicorns who have managed to lose weight and the rest of us: their habits. When you acknowledge that following a diet is not getting you anywhere, and you make a few small changes to your everyday routine, you'll find yourself happier and healthy as f*ck.

Healthy As F*ck is a smart, funny and practical guide to revolutionising your health and wellness. Oonagh Duncan addresses everything from mindset to meal prep in order to help you get healthy (and happy!) from the inside out. She'll make you laugh, she'll make you think, and she'll give you just the kick in the you-know-what that you need to put healthy habits into action.’

Ocean Robbins, bestselling author of 31-Day Food Revolution

Oonagh Duncan

Oonagh Duncan is a multi-award-winning trainer with 17 years of distinction in the fitness industry. She has worked as an Associate Fitness Editor for Chatelaine magazine, a contributing writer for Fitness magazine, and is a regular speaker on fitness matters on TV and radio. Currently, Oonagh helps hundreds of people change their bodies through her bootcamp and online program, The 28-Day Transformation Challenge. This programme — the culmination of her fitness expertise — is the basis for the system outlined in Healthy As F*ck.

THE COME AS YOU ARE WORKBOOK

a practical guide to the science of sex Emily Nagoski

A practical workbook from the New York Times bestselling author of Come As You Are that will radically transform your sex life.

In Come As You Are, sex educator Dr Emily Nagoski revealed the true story behind female sexuality, uncovering the little-known science of what makes us tick and, more importantly, how and why.

Now, in The Come As You Are Workbook, she offers practical tips and techniques that will help women to have the mind-blowing sex that they deserve (and that men have been having all along).

This collection of worksheets, journaling prompts, illustrations, and diagrams is an engaging companion for anyone who wants to further their understanding of their own bodies and sexuality.

Praise for Come As You Are:’Nagoski’s book deserves plaudits for the rare achievement of merging pop science and the sexual self-help genre in prose that’s not insufferably twee … [Come As You Are] offers up hard facts on the science of arousal and desire in a friendly and accessible way.’

The Guardian (UK)

Emily Nagoski

Emily Nagoski is Wellness Education Director and Lecturer at Smith College, where she teaches Women’s Sexuality. She has a PhD in Health Behavior with a doctoral concentration in human sexuality from Indiana University (IU), and a master’s degree (also from IU) in counseling, with a clinical internship at the Kinsey Institute Sexual Health Clinic. She has taught graduate and undergraduate classes in human sexuality, relationships and communication, stress management, and sex education. She is the author of three guides for Ian Kerner’s GoodInBed.com, including the Guide to Female Orgasm, and she writes the popular sex blog, TheDirtyNormal.com. She is the author of the New York Times bestseller Come As You Are.

JUST MERCY (FILM TIE-IN EDITION)

a story of justice and redemption Bryan Stevenson

Soon to be a major motion-picture starring Michael B. Jordan, Jamie Foxx, and Brie Larson.

#1 New York Times bestseller, and a widely acclaimed and multi-award–winning book, this is a powerful, true story about the potential for mercy to redeem us, and a clarion call to fix America’s broken system of justice, as seen in the HBO documentary True Justice

.

Bryan Stevenson was a young lawyer when he founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice dedicated to defending those most desperate and in need: the poor, the wrongly condemned, and women and children trapped in the farthest reaches of our criminal justice system. One of his first cases was that of Walter McMillian, a young man who was sentenced to die for a notorious murder he insisted he didn’t commit. The case drew Bryan into a tangle of conspiracy, political machination, and legal brinkmanship — and transformed his understanding of mercy and justice forever.

Just Mercy is at once an unforgettable account of an idealistic, gifted young lawyer’s coming of age, a moving window into the lives of those he has defended, and an inspiring argument for compassion in the pursuit of true justice.

It is now the subject of a major motion picture, starring Michael B Jordan and Jamie Foxx.

‘Bryan Stevenson is America’s young Nelson Mandela — a brilliant lawyer fighting with courage and conviction to guarantee justice for all.’

Desmond Tutu, Nobel Peace Laureate

Bryan Stevenson

Bryan Stevenson is the executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama, and a professor of law at New York University Law School. He has won relief for dozens of condemned prisoners, argued five times before the Supreme Court, and won national acclaim for his work challenging bias against the poor and people of colour. He has received numerous awards, including the MacArthur Foundation ‘Genius’ Grant.

THE OBESITY CODE COOKBOOK

recipes to help you manage your insulin, lose weight, and improve your health Jason Fung

By the 500,000-copy bestselling author of The Obesity Code

Recipes to revolutionalise the way you cook, eat, and live.

In The Obesity Code, Dr Jason Fung introduced the idea that obesity is caused by our hormones, specifically insulin, and offered practical, easy-to-follow advice on how to lose weight for good. Now, The Obesity Code Cookbook makes it easier than ever to follow his methods.

Over 90 mouth-watering recipes — from slow-roasted pork shoulder to chia pudding and almond cake — showcase healthy fats, nutrient-dense foods, and low or no carbs, with diet plans to help balance your nutrition and energy requirements with your long-term health objectives.

The Obesity Code Cookbook is an indispensable tool for home cooks looking to lower insulin, lose weight, or simply lead a healthy, longer life.

Praise for The Obesity Code‘Dr Jason Fung’s explanation of insulin resistance and the accompanying insulin model of obesity is original, brilliant and game changing.’

Zoë Harcombe, author of The Harcombe Diet

Jason Fung

Dr Jason Fung is a medical doctor recognised as one of the world’s leading experts on fasting to lose weight and reverse diabetes, and his work has been featured in the Atlantic, the New York Post, Forbes, and on Fox News. He is the founder of the Intensive Dietary Management programme and the author of several books, including The Complete Guide to Fasting (co-authored with Jimmy Moore); The Obesity Code, which is an international bestseller; and The Diabetes Code. He lives in Toronto, Canada.

THE POWER OF SHOWING UP

how parental presence shapes who our kids become and how their brains get wired Daniel J. Siegel, Tina Payne Bryson

What’s the one thing a parent can do to make the most difference in the long run? The research is clear: show up! Now the bestselling authors of The Whole-Brain Child and No-Drama Discipline explain what this means over the course of childhood.

One of the very best scientific predictors for how any child turns out — in terms of happiness, academic success, leadership skills, and meaningful relationships — is whether at least one adult in their life has consistently shown up for them. In an age of scheduling demands and digital distractions, showing up for your child might sound like a tall order. But as Daniel J. Siegel and Tina Payne Bryson reassuringly explain, it doesn’t take a lot of time, energy, or money. Instead, showing up means offering a quality of presence. And it’s simple to provide once you understand the four building blocks of a child’s healthy development. Every child needs to feel what Siegel and Bryson call the Four S’s: safe, seen, soothed, and secure.

Based on the latest brain and attachment research, The Power of Showing Up shares stories, scripts, simple strategies, illustrations, and tips for honouring the Four S’s effectively in all kinds of situations: when our kids are struggling or when they’re enjoying success; when we’re consoling, disciplining, or arguing with them; and even when we’re apologising for the times we haven’t shown up for them. Demonstrating that mistakes and missteps are repairable, this book is a powerful guide to cultivating your child’s healthy emotional landscape.

‘In this encouraging and empowering book, psychiatrist Siegel (Aware) and clinical social worker Bryson provide steps for parents and caregivers to help children attain success and “feel at home in the world” ... Thanks to this excellent work, Siegel and Payne will leave readers with an empathetic and helpful philosophy to apply to their own parenting.’

Publishers Weekly

Daniel J. Siegel

Daniel J. Siegel, MD, received his medical degree from Harvard University and completed his postgraduate medical education at UCLA, where he is currently a clinical professor. He is the executive director of the Mindsight Institute, and the author of numerous books, including the bestsellers Mindsight and Brainstorm, as well as No-Drama DisciplineThe Whole-Brain Child (co-authored with Tina Payne Bryson), and Aware. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and occasionally with his launched adolescents.

Tina Payne Bryson

Tina Payne Bryson, PhD, is a pediatric and adolescent psychotherapist, parenting consultant, and the director of parenting education and development for the Mindsight Institute. A frequent lecturer to parents, educators, and professionals, she lives near Los Angeles with her husband and three children.

UP THE DOWN STAIRCASE

Bel Kaufman

Our reissue of Bel Kaufman’s classic 1964 novel timelessly depicts the shambolic joys and myriad frustrations of a young teacher. With an introduction by Diane Ravitch and a foreword by Gabbie Stroud.

Sylvia Barrett arrives at New York City’s Calvin Coolidge High fresh from earning literature degrees at Hunter College and eager to shape young minds. Instead she encounters broken windows, a lack of supplies, a stifling bureaucracy, and students with no interest in Chaucer. Her bumpy yet ultimately rewarding journey is depicted through an extraordinary collection of correspondence: sternly worded yet nonsensical administrative memos, furtive notes of wisdom from teacher to teacher, ‘polio consent slips’, and student homework assignments that unwittingly speak from the heart.

Up the Down Staircase stands as the seminal novel of a beleaguered public school system that is redeemed by teachers who love to teach and students who long to be recognised. It is poignant, devastating, laugh-out-loud funny, and — in our current moment of debate around the future of education — more relevant than ever.

‘[Kaufman] fully grasped the thankless position of the teachers left to impart knowledge and instil citizenship in the face of awesome obstacles … [T]he most enduring account we have of teachers’ lives — not naïve, not exculpatory, but empathetic and aware.’

Samuel G. Freedman, The New Yorker

Bel Kaufman

Bel Kaufman was an author and schoolteacher. Born in Berlin in 1911, she spent her childhood in Odessa and emigrated with her family to the Bronx when she was twelve. Her grandfather was the Yiddish humourist Sholem Aleichem. In addition to Up the Down Staircase, she is also the author of the novel Love, Etc. She died in 2014

NO VISIBLE BRUISES

what we don’t know about domestic violence can kill us Rachel Louise Snyder

AN ESQUIRE AND NEW YORK TIMES BOOK OF THE YEAR

An award-winning journalist’s exploration of the domestic violence epidemic, and how to combat it.

An average of 137 women are killed by familial violence across the globe every day. In the UK alone, two women die each week at the hands of their partners, and in the US domestic violence homicides have risen by 32 percent since 2017. The WHO deems it a ‘global epidemic’. Yet public understanding of this urgent problem remains catastrophically low.

Journalist Rachel Louise Snyder was no exception. Despite years of experience reporting on international conflicts, when it came to violence in the domestic sphere, she believed all the common assumptions: that it was a fate for the unlucky few, a matter of bad choices and cruel environments. That if things were dire enough, victims would leave. That violence inside the home was private. And, perhaps most of all, that unless you stand at the receiving end of a punch, it has nothing to do with you.

All this changed when Snyder began talking to the victims and perpetrators whose stories she tells in this book. Fearlessly reporting from the front lines of the epidemic, in No Visible Bruises she interviews men who have murdered their families, women who have nearly been murdered, and people who have grown up besieged by familial aggression, painting a vivid and nuanced picture of its reality. She talks to experts in violence prevention and law enforcement, revealing how domestic abuse has its roots in our education, economic, health, and justice systems, and how by tackling these origins we can render it preventable.

‘Compulsively readable … In a writing style that's as gripping as good fiction, as intimate as memoir and deeply informed, [Snyder] takes us into the lives of the abused, the abusers and the survivors … The stories are devastating, but Snyder keeps us reading by pointing us toward possible solutions … After a few chapters, I was telling a prosecutor friend that everyone in her office — no, everyone in the state who deals with family violence — had to read this book. Because it will save lives.’

The Washington Post

Rachel Louise Snyder

Rachel Louise Snyder’s work has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, The Washington Post, The New Republic, Slate, and elsewhere. Her other books include Fugitive Denim and the novel What We’ve Lost Is Nothing. She has been the recipient of an Overseas Press Award for her work on This American Life. No Visible Bruises was awarded the J. Anthony Lukas Work-in-Progress Award. An associate professor at American University, Snyder lives in Washington, D.C.

PARENTHOOD THE SWEDISH WAY

a science-based guide to pregnancy, birth, and infancy Cecilia Chrapkowska, Agnes Wold (trans. Stuart Tudball, Chris Wayment)

Swedes are some of the world’s happiest people, and their children are no exception. Parenthood the Swedish Way will help you and your family embrace the Scandi style of childrearing: practical, egalitarian, and free from outdated myths.

Many expectant parents will be surprised and relieved to hear the following: inhaling dust doesn’t lead to allergies; breastfeeding doesn’t protect against allergies; sterilising bottles and pacifiers is unnecessary in most industrial countries; and if you think you shouldn’t drink alcohol when breastfeeding, you’ve been taken in by plain moralism and not scientific evidence.

Paediatrician Cecilia Chrapkowska runs one of Sweden’s most popular parenting blogs, Barnakuten, and is a specialist on vaccinations. Dr Agnes Wold has been named Sweden’s Woman of the Year for her tireless work in women’s health. Together they present cutting-edge research from around the world that can guide you to make better parenting choices. Drawing on Sweden’s famously generous parental leave and enlightened social policies, they also demonstrate the importance of equal parenting, and provide practical tools for parents everywhere to share responsibility equally.

From the progressive land in the North, this is the fact-based, feminist guide to parenting you have been waiting for.

‘Are you of the opinion that the Trump administration rely on alternative facts much? That is nothing compared to what women are confronted by as soon as they get pregnant. In the parallel pregnancy reality the alt-facts are commonplace. ’Truths’ are constantly foisted on you, and shockingly enough they often turn out to be intrusive opinions, moralism, or pure inventions … If The Handmaid’s Tale is an exaggerated and dramatised reminder of the anxiety of becoming breeding stock, Wold & Chrapkowska’s book can be a crucial antidote. One by one, they deal with some well-known ’truths’ related to bearing and birthing that are in part being spread by social functions, e.g. the variety of advice on what you can eat and drink during pregnancy and breastfeeding — some are correct while other recommendations seem to have been inspired by Christian faith and morality rather than science.’

Dagens Nyheter

Cecilia Chrapkowska

Cecilia Chrapkowska, MD, is a board-certified specialist in paediatrics. She works at Astrid Lindgren’s Children’s Hospital at Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm. She runs one of Sweden’s most popular blogs on parenting, Barnakuten, and regularly appears as a child-health expert in national Swedish magazines and newspapers, and on radio and television.

Agnes Wold

Agnes Wold, MD, PhD, works as a professor and senior consultant at the Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Gothenburg. She has been a columnist for Sweden’s largest newspaper and for the political magazine Fokus, and was named Woman of the Year by Expressen in 2016.

THE DEVIL

Nadia Dalbuono

When Leone Scamarcio investigates the murder of a boy with demonic possession, who will win: Scamarcio or the Devil?

On a cold and wintry Roman afternoon, a troubled young man, Andrea Borghese, is found dead in his parents’ apartment. The last people to seehim alive were five Roman Catholic priests who had left the Vatican to visit Andrea for a very particular purpose. They were performing an exorcism.

Meanwhile, Detective Leone Scamarcio is unravelling. His partner, the beautiful ex-showgirl Fiammetta DiBondi, is expecting their first child, and the baby is due any day. But what kind of world is this in which to raise a child? When his boss, Chief Garramone, calls with the Borghesi case, insisting that Scamarcio is the only man he trusts with the job, Scamarcio accepts the mission as a welcome distraction.

But the case proves far more tangled than Scamarcio had anticipated, and he finds himself in an ever-thickening plot of occult practices, murder, church corruption, government bribery, pharmaceutical dirty dealings, family secrets, and, of course, the mafia. To make things even more complicated, Scamarcio’s old flame, Aurelia, has returned to Rome, and Scamarcio is having trouble thinking straight. As he circles closer to the truth, the danger mounts, and when his new little family comes under threat, Leone Scamarcio has to decide once and for all what he really stands for.

Praise for The Few:‘Has Donna Leon found her match ?’

LoveReading

Nadia Dalbuono

Nadia Dalbuono has spent the last eighteen years working as a documentary director and consultant for Channel 4, ITV, Discovery, and National Geographic in various countries. The Devil is the fifth book in the Leone Scamarcio series, following The Few, The American, The Hit, and The Extremist. She divides her time between the UK and northern Italy.

GREENWOOD

Michael Christie

‘The truth is that all family lines, from the highest to the lowest, originate somewhere, on some particular day. Even the grandest trees must’ve once been seeds spun helpless on the wind, and then just meek saplings nosing up from the soil.’

2038. On a remote island off the Pacific coast of British Columbia stands the Greenwood Arboreal Cathedral, one of the world’s last forests. Wealthy tourists flock from all corners of the dust-choked globe to see the spectacle and remember what once was. But even as they breathe in the fresh air and pose for photographs amidst the greenery, guide Jake knows that the forest is dying, though her bosses won’t admit it.

1908. Two passenger locomotives meet head-on. The only survivors are two young boys, who take refuge in a trapper’s cabin in a forest on the edge of town. In twenty-six years, one of them, now a recluse, will find an abandoned baby — another child of Greenwood — setting off a series of events that will change the course of his life, and the lives of those around him.

Structured like the rings of a tree, this remarkable novel moves from the future to the present to the past, and back again, to tell the story of one family and their enduring connection to the place that brought them together.

‘This book is why we read books. Why we need books. Wildly inventive, structurally elegant, deeply felt, and so very wise. Greenwood is Michael Christie's best work ever, and that’s saying something.’

Alexander MacLeod, author of Light Lifting

Michael Christie

Michael Christie is the author of the novel If I Fall, If I Die, which was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, the Kirkus Prize, was selected as a New York Times Editors’ Choice, and was on numerous best of 2015 lists. His linked collection of stories, The Beggar's Garden, was longlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, shortlisted for the Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize, and won the Vancouver Book Award. His essays and book reviews have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Globe and Mail. A former carpenter and homeless shelter worker, he divides his time between Victoria, British Columbia, and Galiano Island, where he lives with his wife and two sons in a timber-frame house that he built himself.

IZZY AND FRANK

Katrina Lehman (illus. Sophie Beer)

Izzy loved her island. But most of all, she loved Frank the seagull.

Izzy and Frank spend blue-sky-sunny days and grey-cloud-rainy days roaming and playing by the sea.

But when Izzy has to leave her lighthouse and island life behind to move to the city, she also has to say goodbye to Frank.

The city is crowded and noisy, and Izzy misses the sand and the sea.

Can Izzy find a place for herself in her new home? And will she ever see Frank again?

Katrina Lehman

Katrina Lehman lives in Melbourne and has three small children and a blue-tongue lizard. She is lucky enough to spend all day crafting words as a writer and as an editor, helping authors unleash their inner magic.

TEN DOORS DOWN

the story of an extraordinary adoption reunion Robert Tickner

The story of a federal minister’s remarkable reunion with his birth parents.

Robert Tickner had always known he was adopted, but had rarely felt much curiosity about his origins. Born in 1951, he had a happy childhood — raised by his loving adoptive parents, Bert and Gwen Tickner, in the small seaside town of Forster, New South Wales. He grew up to be a cheerful and confident young man with a fierce sense of social justice, and the desire and stamina to make political change. Serving in the Hawke and Keating governments, he held the portfolio of minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs. Among other achievements while in government, he was responsible for initiating the reconciliation process with Indigenous Australians, and he was instrumental in instigating the national inquiry into the stolen generations.

During his time on the front bench, Robert’s son was born, and it was his deep sense of connection to this child that moved him at last to turn his attention to the question of his own birth. Although he had some sense of the potentially life-changing course that lay ahead of him, he could not have anticipated learning of the exceptional nature of the woman who had brought him into the world, the deep scars that his forced adoption had left on her, and the astonishing series of coincidences that had already linked their lives. And this was only the first half of a story that was to lead to a reunion with his birth father and siblings.

This deeply moving memoir is a testament to the significance of all forms of family in shaping us — and to the potential for love to heal great harm.

‘Tickner’s sensitive portrayal of the woman at the heart of his story is a powerful refutation of an inhuman system that doomed generations of single mothers (described as ‘of low intelligence if not actually retarded’ by doctors) and their children (the so-called ‘clean slates’) to the unimaginable misery of forced adoptions. Hundreds and thousands of families were touched by these policies. This moving memoir tells the exceptional story of one of them.’ FOUR STARS

Julia Taylor, Books+Publishing

Robert Tickner

Robert Tickner grew up a country boy on the New South Wales mid-north coast and became an Aboriginal Legal Service lawyer and an alderman of the Sydney City Council. In 1984 he won the federal seat of Hughes, and in 1990 he became the federal minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs. He is Australia’s longest-serving minister in that role, and served in a period of great reform during the Hawke and Keating governments. He then became CEO of Australian Red Cross and led the organisation for a decade from 2005 to 2015.

UNDER THE LOVE UMBRELLA

Allison Colpoys, Davina Bell

From this award-winning creative duo comes a stunning celebration of the joy and comfort that love can bring — wherever we roam in the big, wild world.

Whatever you fear, come close my dear
You’re tucked in safe for always here
And I will never not be near
Because of our love umbrella

A celebration of the joy and comfort that love can bring — in a special edition for the very smallest of readers.

‘The enduring love between parent and child is celebrated in distinctive, vintage-inspired style.’

The Bookseller

Allison Colpoys

Allison Colpoys is an award-winning designer and illustrator, and the Associate Art Director at Scribe Publications. Her picture books include The Underwater Fancy-Dress Parade, Under the Love Umbrella, If All the World Were... and All the Ways To Be Smart. As well as receiving numerous Australian Book Design Awards for her illustration and cover design, she has won the CBCA Crichton Award for Best New Talent and an Australian Book Industry Award. As a freelancer, Allison is represented by the Jacky Winter Group.

Davina Bell

Davina Bell is a writer from Western Australia. She is the author of the award-winning picture book The Underwater Fancy-Dress Parade, which won the 2016 Australian Book Industry Award for Best Children’s Book from a Small Publisher, and Under the Love Umbrella, which was shortlisted for the same award in 2018 (both illustrated by Allison Colpoys). She is also author of the ‘Alice' books in the bestselling Our Australian Girl series. For six years she was a Senior Editor at Penguin Books in the Young Readers Division, where she worked with some of our country’s most beloved children’s book creators. Davina lives and works in Melbourne, where she still dreams about the Western Australian beaches while drinking a lot of very good Melbourne coffee.

WILDHOOD

the epic journey from adolescence to adulthood in humans and other animals Barbara Natterson-Horowitz, Kathryn Bowers

A revelatory investigation of human and animal adolescence from the New York Times bestselling authors of Zoobiquity.

Teenagers: behind the banter, the tediously repetitive games and clicks, the moping and screaming, the fast living, and the jockeying and preening lie the rules of the entire animal kingdom.

Based on their popular Harvard University course, latest research, and worldwide travels, Natterson-Horowitz and Bowers examine the four universal challenges that every adolescent on our planet must face on the journey to adulthood: how to be safe, how to navigate hierarchy, how to court potential mates, and how to leave the nest. Safety, status, sex, and survival.

For parents and children, predators and prey alike, this is a powerfully revelatory book, entertainingly written. To become, as its reader does, for a while, a young penguin or a young humpback whale, or even an octopus tapping a shrimp on the shoulder or an orca silencing their victim, is a giddying experience. The authors open up horizons for their ordinary human readers as they go about their daily animal lives, and permit them to look afresh at the confusing and exhilarating experience of adolescence. Even your average teen will not get bored.

‘The authors steer clear of excesses of ethology or anthropomorphism, and they emphasise that maturity is not a goal but a process. A lucid, entertaining account of how creatures of many kinds learn to navigate the complex world that adulthood opens.’

Kirkus

Barbara Natterson-Horowitz

Dr Barbara Natterson-Horowitz, is a Visiting Professor at Harvard University in the Department of Human Evolutionary Biology. She is also professor of medicine/cardiology at UCLA, where she co-founded the Evolutionary Medicine program. She is the co-author of Zoobiquity and Wildhood.

Kathryn Bowers

Kathryn Bowers is a science journalist who has taught medical narrative and comparative literature at UCLA. She’s a Future Tense Fellow at New America in Washington, DC, and was an editor at Zócalo Public Square in Los Angeles. She is the co-author of Zoobiquity and Wildhood

FRYING PLANTAIN

Zalika Reid-Benta

A thrillingly universal portrait of a young woman caught between two cultures

Kara Davis is a girl caught in the middle — of her Canadian nationality and her desire to be a ‘true’ Jamaican, of her mother and grandmother’s rages and life lessons, of having to avoid being thought of as too ‘faas’ or too ‘quiet’ or too ‘bold’ or too ‘soft’. Set in ‘Little Jamaica’, Toronto’s Eglinton West neighbourhood, Kara moves from girlhood to the threshold of adulthood, from primary school to high school graduation, in these twelve interconnected stories. We see her on a visit to Jamaica, startled by the sight of a severed pig’s head in her great aunt’s freezer; in high school, the victim of a devastating prank by her closest friends; and as a teenager in and out of her grandmother’s house, trying to cope with the ongoing battles between her unyielding grandparents.

A rich and unforgettable portrait of growing up between worlds, Frying Plantain shows how, in one charged moment, friendship and love can turn to enmity and hate, well-meaning protection can become control, and teasing play can turn to something much darker.  In her brilliantly incisive debut, Zalika Reid-Benta artfully depicts the tensions between mothers and daughters, second-generation children and first-generation cultural expectations, and Black identity and predominately white society.

‘Zalika Reid-Benta announces herself as an enormous voice for the coming decade (and one that is desperately needed). Not all must-read books are this enjoyable.’

Gary Shteyngart, author of Super Sad True Love Story and Lake Success

Zalika Reid-Benta

Zalika Reid-Benta is a Toronto-based writer whose work has appeared on CBC Books, in TOK: Writing the New Toronto, and in Apogee Journal. In 2011, George Elliott Clarke recommended her as a ‘Writer to Watch’. She received an MFA in fiction from Columbia University in 2014, and is an alumnus of the 2017 Banff Writing Studio. She completed a double major in English Literature and Cinema and a minor in Caribbean Studies at University of Toronto’s Victoria College. She also studied Creative Writing at U of T’s School of Continuing Studies. She is currently working on a young-adult fantasy novel drawing inspiration from Jamaican folklore and Akan spirituality.

ALL OUR RELATIONS

Indigenous trauma in the shadow of colonialism Tanya Talaga

The world’s Indigenous communities are fighting to live and dying too young. In this vital and incisive work, Tanya Talaga explores intergenerational trauma and the alarming rise of youth suicide.

From Northern Ontario to Nunavut, Norway, Brazil, Australia, and the United States, the Indigenous experience in colonised nations is startlingly similar and deeply disturbing. It is an experience marked by the violent separation of Peoples from the land, the separation of families, and the separation of individuals from traditional ways of life — all of which has culminated in a spiritual separation that has had an enduring impact on generations of Indigenous children. As a result of this colonial legacy, too many communities today lack access to the basic determinants of health — income, employment, education, a safe environment, health services — leading to a mental health and youth suicide crisis on a global scale. But, Talaga reminds us, First Peoples also share a history of resistance, resilience, and civil rights activism, from the Occupation of Alcatraz led by the Indians of All Tribes, to the Northern Ontario Stirland Lake Quiet Riot, to the Standing Rock protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline, which united Indigenous Nations from across Turtle Island in solidarity.

All Our Relations is a powerful call for action, justice, and a better, more equitable world for all Indigenous Peoples.

‘An essential work of non-fiction … Through storytelling, on-the-ground reporting, literature surveys, and plenty of statistics, Talaga demonstrates the extent to which Indigenous children continue to live under the full weight of colonial history … All children, she writes, ‘need to know who their ancestors are, who their heroes and villains are.’ In All Our Relations, Talaga restores that basic right to Indigenous children who have been robbed of it. And the rest of us, as an epigraph from author Thomas King makes clear, no longer have the excuse of saying we haven’t heard this story. Talaga alone has told it twice now.’

Quill & Quire

Tanya Talaga

Tanya Talaga is the acclaimed author of Seven Fallen Feathers, a multi-award winner including the RBC Taylor Prize, the Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing, and the First Nation Communities READ: Young Adult/Adult Award. The book was a finalist for the Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Nonfiction Prize and the BC National Award for Nonfiction. Talaga was the 2018 CBC Massey Lecturer, and is the author of the US bestseller All Our Relations. For more than twenty years she has been a journalist at the Toronto Star. Talaga is of Polish and Ojibwe descent. Her grandmother is a member of Fort William First Nation. She lives in Toronto with her two teenage children.

THE BLESSED RITA

Tommy Wieringa (trans. Sam Garrett)

‘He had seen more and more people from the East in recent years. Mostly gypsies, people said. Bulgarians, Romanians — you could tell by the plates on the vans and the trailers. The Poles had been around for some time already. Burglaries, thefts. The blessings of the new Europe.’

Paul Krüzen lives with his father in an old farmhouse, not far from the German border. Where once his father took care of him, now he takes care of his father. It has been a long time since his beautiful, worldly-wise mother left them for the arms of a Russian pilot, never once looking back.

Paul’s world is changing: his small Dutch village is now home to Chinese restaurateurs, Polish plumbers, and Russian thugs. Saint Rita, the patron saint of lost causes, watches over Paul and his best friend Hedwiges, two misfits at odds with the modern world, while Paul takes comfort in his own Blessed Rita, a prostitute from Quezon. But even she cannot protect them from the tragedy that is about to unfold.

In this sharply observed, darkly funny novel, Wieringa shines a light on people struggling at the margins of a changing world. The Blessed Rita is an affecting tribute to those left behind and an ode to those wanting to transcend themselves and their heritage.

‘This novel full of autobiographic humus sizzles with ambition … In The Blessed Rita, Wieringa quietly revels in scenes struck sweetly with an exuberance of colour, deposited with careless writer’s joy and grimly comedic tones. He writes like a fearless showboat in a bar, tethering his listeners to his every word … From these miniscule, damaged lives, Tommy extracts a very sensual book, drunk with language and written with a stylistic precision you will envy.’ FOUR STARS

De Volkskrant

Tommy Wieringa

Tommy Wieringa was born in 1967 and grew up partly in the Netherlands, and partly in the tropics. He began his writing career with travel stories and journalism, and is the author of several internationally bestselling novels. His fiction has been longlisted for the Booker International Prize, shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and the Oxford/Weidenfeld Prize, and has won Holland’s Libris Literature Prize.

CITY ON FIRE

the fight for Hong Kong Antony Dapiran

A long-term resident and expert observer of dissent in Hong Kong takes readers to the front lines of Hong Kong’s revolution.

Through the long, hot summer of 2019, Hong Kong burned. Anti-government protests, sparked by a government proposal to introduce a controversial extradition law, grew into a pro-democracy movement that engulfed the city for months. Protesters fought street battles with police, and the unrest brought the People’s Liberation Army to the very doorstep of Hong Kong. Driven primarily by students and youth protesters with their ‘Be Water!’ philosophy, borrowed from hometown hero Bruce Lee, this leaderless, technology-driven protest movement defied a global superpower and changed Hong Kong, perhaps forever. But it also changed China, and challenged China’s global standing.

In City on Fire, Antony Dapiran provides the first detailed account of the protests, reveals the protesters’ unique tactics, explains how the movement fits into the city’s long history of dissent, and looks at what the protests will mean for the future of Hong Kong, China, and China’s place in the world.

Antony Dapiran

A long-time resident of Hong Kong, Antony Dapiran has written about the protests for The Guardian and New Statesman, has been interviewed on the subject by the BBC, Sky News (UK), and Channel 4 (UK), and his expert views have been quoted by leading media outlets across the globe, including The Times, Financial Times, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and The Irish Times.

HIGH RISK

a doctor’s notes on pregnancy, birth, and the unexpected Chavi Eve Karkowsky

One doctor’s testament to the importance of listening — truly listening — to women and their medical experiences of pregnancy and childbirth.

‘My work offers a window into the darkest and lightest corners of people’s lives, into the extremes of human experience,’ writes Dr Chavi Eve Karkowsky in High Risk, her timely and unflinching account of working in maternal-foetal medicine ? the sub-speciality of obstetrics that concerns high-risk pregnancies.

As an outspoken champion of women’s health, a mother of four, and a humane, wry, and altogether remarkable writer, Dr Karkowsky tells of miracles and joy, but also of challenge and loss — illustrating the complexity of reproduction and the health services that surround it. With historical insight and journalistic verve, she unpacks what is involved for women, for a family, and for us as a society, and explores what’s at risk when these aspects of life remain clouded in mystery and misinformation.

Blending personal narrative and broader analysis, High Risk is a doctor’s gripping and provocative testimonial to the strength and resilience of the women she treats, and — in an era when reproductive rights are under threat — a timely reminder that women’s reproductive health is of vital concern to us all.

Chavi Eve Karkowsky

Dr Chavi Karkowsky is a maternal-foetal medicine specialist. She completed medical school in New York City at Mount Sinai School of Medicine and then completed her residency at Harvard. After two years as a generalist obstetrician-gynaecologist, she entered fellowship at Montefiore Medical Center/Albert Einstein College of Medicine, where she is currently an assistant professor in the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Women’s Health. She is also the medical director of the largest teaching OBGYN clinic within their system. She is an active member of both the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists as well as the Society of Maternal-Fetal Medicine, and is fully board-certified in both OBGYN as well as maternal-foetal medicine. In addition to her clinical practice, she has published essays and op-eds in The Daily Beast, the Atlantic, Health Magazine, Slate, and the Washington Post.

HOW TO EAT

all your food and diet questions answered Mark Bittman, David L. Katz

Bestselling author Mark Bittman and physician David Katz cut through all the noise on food, health, and diet to give you the real answers you need.

What is the ‘best’ diet? Do calories matter? And when it comes to protein, fat, and carbs, which ones are good and which are bad? Mark Bittman and David Katz answer all these questions and more in a lively and easy-to-read Q&A format. Inspired by their viral hit article on Grub Street — one of New York magazine’s most popular and most-shared articles — Bittman and Katz share their clear, no-nonsense perspective on food and diet, answering questions covering everything from basic nutrients to superfoods to fad diets.

Topics include dietary patterns (Just what should humans eat?); grains (Aren’t these just ‘carbs’? Do I need to avoid gluten?); meat and dairy (Does grass-fed matter?); alcohol (Is drinking wine actually good for me?); and more. Throughout, Bittman and Katz filter the science of diet and nutrition through a lens of common sense, delivering straightforward advice with a healthy dose of wit.

‘In an approachable Q&A format, award-winning New York Times columnist Bittman and Katz, the founding director of Yale University’s Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Centre, tell you everything you ever wanted to know about eating healthily.’

Library Journal

Mark Bittman

Mark Bittman is the author of 30 acclaimed books, including the beloved ‘How to Cook Everything’ series. His TED Talk has more than 4 million views, and for more than two decades his popular and compelling stories appeared in the New York Times.

David L. Katz

Dr David L. Katz is the founding director of Yale University’s Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Centre and founder/president of the True Health Initiative, a non-profit organisation that promotes healthy, sustainable diet and lifestyle. Katz is recognised globally for expertise in nutrition, weight management, and the prevention of chronic disease. He has a social media following of nearly 1 million.

THE ANIMALS IN THAT COUNTRY

Laura Jean McKay

Out on the road, no one speaks, everything talks.

Hard-drinking, foul-mouthed, and allergic to bullshit, Jean is not your usual grandma. She’s never been good at getting on with other humans, apart from her beloved granddaughter, Kimberly. Instead, she surrounds herself with animals, working as a guide in an outback wildlife park. And although Jean talks to all her charges, she has a particular soft spot for a young dingo called Sue.

As disturbing news arrives of a pandemic sweeping the country, Jean realises this is no ordinary flu: its chief symptom is that its victims begin to understand the language of animals — first mammals, then birds and insects, too. As the flu progresses, the unstoppable voices become overwhelming, and many people begin to lose their minds, including Jean’s infected son, Lee. When he takes off with Kimberly, heading south, Jean feels the pull to follow her kin.

Setting off on their trail, with Sue the dingo riding shotgun, they find themselves in a stark, strange world in which the animal apocalypse has only further isolated people from other species. Bold, exhilarating, and wholly original, The Animals in That Country asks what would happen, for better or worse, if we finally understood what animals were saying.

‘This is a game-changing, life-changing novel, the kind that comes along right when you need it, and compels you to listen to its terrifying poetry. Compulsively readable and yet also pushing the boundaries of what is possible in terms of language and narrative, this is a brilliant and disturbing book that will make you rethink everything you thought you understood about non-human animal sentience and agency. I don’t think any reader can ever forget a voice like Sue the dingo’s — wise and obscene in equal measure. A triumph.’

Ceridwen Dovey

Laura Jean McKay

Laura Jean McKay is the author of Holiday in Cambodia (Black Inc. 2013), shortlisted for three national book awards in Australia. Her work appears in Meanjin, Overland, Best Australian Stories, The Saturday Paper, and The North American Review. Laura has a PhD from the University of Melbourne focusing on literary animal studies, and she is currently the ‘animal expert’ presenter on ABC Listen’s Animal Sound Safari.

THE DRAGONS AND THE SNAKES

how the Rest learned to fight the West David Kilcullen

Soldier-scholar David Kilcullen shows what opponents of the West have learned during the last quarter-century of conflict.

Just a few years ago, people spoke of the US as a hyperpower — a titan stalking the world stage with more relative power than any empire in history. Yet as early as 1993, newly appointed CIA director James Woolsey pointed out that although Western powers had ‘slain a large dragon’ by defeating the Soviet Union in the Cold War, they now faced a ‘bewildering variety of poisonous snakes’.

In this book, Killcullen explains what happened to the ‘snakes’ (non-state threats, including from terrorists and guerrillas) and the ‘dragons’ (state-based competitors such as Russia and China). He explores how enemies learn under conditions of conflict, and examines how Western dominance over a very particular, narrowly defined form of warfare has forced adversaries to adapt in ways that present serious new challenges to America and its allies.

State and non-state threats have increasingly come to resemble each other, Kilcullen argues, with states adopting non-state techniques and non-state actors now able to access levels of precision and lethal weapon-systems once only available to governments.

A counterintuitive look at this new, vastly more complex environment, The Dragons and the Snakes not only reshaped our understanding of the West’s enemies’ capabilities, but also shows how we can respond, given the increasing limits on US power.

‘Disturbingly brilliant. David Kilcullen, ever the thoughtful observer of wars and the people who wage them, captures the changes in warfare that already confound — and threaten to overwhelm us. He correctly shows that we are mentally and physically unprepared for the new nature of conflict, and will likely pay dearly for it.’

Stan McChrystal, partner at McChrystal Group

David Kilcullen

David Kilcullen is a professor in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences of the University of New South Wales and a professor of practice in global security at Arizona State University. A former soldier and diplomat, he served as a counterinsurgency advisor during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Dr Kilcullen is also the author of the highly acclaimed The Accidental Guerrilla, Out of the Mountains, and Blood Year.

THE GIFT OF PRESENCE

a mindfulness guide for women Caroline Welch

A practical, user-friendly guide for women seeking focus and calm in the midst of life’s storms.

Overwhelmed by the demands of family, work, and multiple responsibilities, many women find themselves feeling scattered and distracted. In this eye-opening book, co-founder and CEO of the Mindsight Institute Caroline Welch takes readers on a mindfulness journey to help us de-stress and cultivate inner peace. According to Welch, we do not need countless hours sitting in silence to be more present in our lives — the key is to practice mindfulness wherever we are and whenever we can.

The Gift of Presence guides readers in developing four innate abilities we all possess that will allow us to become more resilient and centred in our lives — even when life is throwing all that it has at us:

  • Presence: the ability to remain firmly in the present moment — to be fully aware of what’s happening as it’s happening.
  • Purpose: the personal meaning that gets us going and gives direction to our lives.
  • Pivoting: an openness to change that allows us to switch direction if that is what is needed.
  • Pacing: the awareness that it is impossible to do everything we want or need to do all at once; the ability to take it life one step at a time.

This life-changing book reveals that we already hold in our hands the keys to a more harmonious life — we simply need to look within.

‘The Gift of Presence is a gift for us all — filled with practical insights and fascinating science about the power of mindfulness. By interviewing over one hundred women from diverse backgrounds, Caroline Welch has gathered real life examples of how being present enriches our lives, allows us to find purpose and meaning, to recharge and renew ourselves, and to pivot when we need to course-correct. Well-written and wise, it’s a must-read for women of all ages.’

Arianna Huffington, founder of HuffPost and founder & CEO of Thrive Global

Caroline Welch

Caroline Welch is the co-founder and CEO of the Mindsight Institute, a graduate of the University of Wisconsin Law School, and is admitted to the state bars of California, Texas, and Wisconsin. She holds a master’s degree in communications from the University of Southern California and previously worked as an English teacher in Japan, a corporate litigator, and Judge Judy’s production attorney.

SMALL MERCIES

Richard Anderson

A husband and wife living on a severely drought-afflicted property take a brief break, only to find that their relationship is parched, too.

After enduring months of extreme drought on their modest freehold, farming couple Dimple and Ruthie face uncertain times on more than one front. Ruthie receives the news every woman dreads. Meanwhile, a wealthy landowner, Wally Oliver, appears on the local radio station, warning small farmers like Dimple and Ruthie that they are doomed, that the sooner they leave the land to large operators like him, the better. Bracing for a fight on all fronts, the couple decide to take a road trip to confront Oliver. Along the way, not only is their resolve tested, but their relationship as well.

Desperate not to dwell on the past but to face up to the future, Dimple and Ruthie make a crucial decision they soon regret. And when the storm clouds finally roll in across the land they love, there’s more than the rain to contend with.

Told with enormous heart, Small Mercies is a tender love story.  It is a story of a couple who feel they must change to endure, and of the land that is as important as their presence on it.

‘A fine-grained study of a marriage and a land in crisis … A wonderful book.’

Jock Serong

Richard Anderson

Richard Anderson is a second-generation farmer from northern New South Wales. He has been running a beef-cattle farm for twenty-five years, but has also worked as a miner and had a stint on the local council. Richard is the author of two rural-crime novels, Retribution and Boxed, both published by Scribe. He lives with his wife, four dogs, and a cat.

FATHOMS

the world in the whale Rebecca Giggs

A stunning meditation on the awe-inspiring lives of whales, revealing what they can teach us about ourselves, our planet, and our relationship to other species.

What can whales reveal about our world today? When writer Rebecca Giggs encountered a humpback whale stranded on her local beachfront in Australia, she began to wonder how the lives of whales shed light on the condition of our seas. Fathoms: the world in the whale blends natural history, philosophy, and science to explore: How do whales experience ecological change? Will our connection to these storied animals be transformed by technology? What can observing whales teach us about the complexity, splendour, and fragility of life? In Fathoms, we learn about whales so rare they have never been named, whale songs that sweep across hemispheres in annual waves of popularity, and whales that have modified the chemical composition of our planet’s atmosphere. We travel to Japan to board the ships that hunt whales, and delve into the deepest seas to discover the plastic pollution now pervading their undersea environment.

In the spirit of Rachel Carson and Rebecca Solnit, Giggs gives us a vivid exploration of the natural world even as she addresses what it means to write about nature at a time of environmental crisis. With depth and clarity, Giggs outlines the challenges we face as we attempt to understand the perspectives of other living beings, and our own place on an evolving planet. Evocative and inspiring, Fathoms marks the arrival of an essential new voice.

Rebecca Giggs

Rebecca Giggs is a writer from Perth, Western Australia. Her work has been widely published, including in Best Australian Essays, Best Australian Science Writing, Best Australian Stories, Granta, Aeon, The Atlantic, The New York Times Magazine, and Griffith Review. Rebecca's nonfiction focuses on how people feel about, and feel for, animals in a time of technological change and ecological crisis.

THE DOCTOR WHO FOOLED THE WORLD

Andrew Wakefield’s war on vaccines Brian Deer

Award-winning investigative reporter Brian Deer reveals the shocking truth behind the rise of Andrew Wakefield ? the so-called father of the anti-vaccine movement.

In February 1998, a then-unknown British doctor, Andrew Wakefield, published an explosive scientific paper in a top medical journal, The Lancet. Researching twelve developmentally challenged children, he claimed to have found evidence that MMR, the lifesaving three-in-one vaccine against measles, mumps, and rubella, was causing a frightening ‘new syndrome’ of autism and bowel disease. As a result, a generation of young parents were terrified, and vaccination rates plummeted.

In The Doctor Who Fooled the World, Brian Deer cuts to the heart of the most damaging medical conspiracy of our time. The only journalist to crack Wakefield’s secrets, Deer explains how he gained legal access to patients’ records, uncovering the truth about their histories and diagnoses, His landmark fifteen-year inquiry saw Wakefield struck from the medical register, his research retracted, and his claims about MMR dubbed ‘an elaborate fraud’.

In this riveting detective story, Deer lays bare the rigged research, secret business schemes, and financial and commercial conflicts of interest that lay behind Wakefield’s original false claims — and the continuing smear campaigns that have aimed to keep the truth hidden.

Now resurrected in the United States, Wakefield dominates a broader international anti-vaccine campaign, exporting his claims everywhere. Alarmingly, widespread outbreaks of measles have returned to threaten children’s health. As before, the facts don’t fit the story, but that hasn’t got in the way of Wakefield’s new campaign.

‘Brian Deer is the world’s foremost authority on Andrew Wakefield.’

Dr Peter J. Hotez, PhD, Baylor College of Medicine, author of Vaccines Did Not Cause Rachel’s Autism

Brian Deer

Brian Deer is a veteran British investigative journalist, best known for his inquiries into the drug industry, medicine, and social issues for the Sunday Times of London. Among his awards, Deer was twice named the UK’s specialist reporter of the year, and in 2016 he was made Doctor of Letters (honoris causa) by York St. John University.

ELLY

Maike Wetzel (trans. Lyn Marven)

A missing child is a nightmare for any family. But what happens when they come back?

Eleven-year-old Elly is missing. After an extensive police search she is presumed dead, and her family must learn to live with a gaping hole in their lives. Then, four years later, she reappears. But soon her parents and sister are plagued by doubts. Is this stranger really the same little girl who went missing? And if not, who is she?

Elly is a gripping tale of grief, longing, and doubt, which takes every parent’s greatest fear and lets it play out to an emotionally powerful, memorable climax. It is a literary novel with all the best qualities of a thriller.

Elly is a book about the dark side of longing.’

Hubert Spiegel, Speech at the Robert Gernhardt Prize

Maike Wetzel

Maike Wetzel was born in 1974 and works as a writer and screenwriter in Berlin. She studied at the Munich Film School and in the UK. The manuscript of her first novel, Elly, won the Robert Gernhardt Prize and the Martha Saalfeld Prize.Maike’s short stories have been translated into numerous languages and received multiple awards.

SOMETHING THAT MAY SHOCK AND DISCREDIT YOU

Daniel Mallory Ortberg

From the writer of Slate’s ‘Dear Prudence’ column and ‘literally the funniest person on the internet’ (Rachel Fershleiser, co-editor of the New York Times bestseller Not Quite What I Was Planning) comes a witty and clever collection of essays and cultural observations spanning pop culture — from the endearingly popular to the staggeringly obscure.

Sometimes you just have to yell. New York Times bestselling author of Texts from Jane Eyre Daniel Mallory Ortberg has mastered the art of ‘poetic yelling’, a genre surely familiar to fans of his cult-favourite website The Toast.

In this irreverent essay collection, Ortberg expands on this concept with in-depth and hilarious studies of all things pop culture, from the high to low brow. From a thoughtful analysis on the beauty of William Shatner to a sinister reimagining of HGTV’s House Hunters, Something That May Shock and Discredit You is a laugh-out-loud funny and whip-smart collection for those who don’t take anything — including themselves — much too seriously.

‘Ortberg’s playful takes on pop culture as he explores everything from House Hunters to Golden Girls to Lord Byron, Lacan, and Rilke … Ortberg’s writing is vulnerable but confident, specific but never narrow, literal and lyrical. The author is refreshingly unafraid of his own uncertainty, but he’s always definitive where it counts … You'll laugh, you'll cry, often both at once. Everyone should read this extraordinary book.’ STARRED REVIEW

Kirkus Reviews

Daniel Mallory Ortberg

Daniel Mallory Ortberg is the ‘Dear Prudence’ advice columnist at Slate, the co-founder of The Toast, and the New York Times bestselling author of Texts From Jane Eyre and The Merry Spinster.

BOX HILL

Adam Mars-Jones

Box Hill is a sizzling, sometimes shocking, and strangely tragic love story between two men, set in the gay biker community of the late 1970s. Beautifully written, intimate, and profoundly affecting, Adam Mars-Jones's first novel in almost a decade is the winner of the 2019 Fitzcarraldo Editions Novel Prize.

‘Mars-Jones's prose is exceptionally nimble, dry, humorously restrained, very English, with a little Nabokovian velvet too. He can describe more or less anything and make it interesting.’

James Wood, London Review of Books

Adam Mars-Jones

Adam Mars-Jones's books include the novels Pilcrow and Cedilla, part of a million-word sequence, and the monograph Noriko Smiling, about a classic Japanese film. He writes regularly for the London Review of Books.